XDA Basics: How to set up and use an Apple AirTag on iPhone

XDA Basics: How to set up and use an Apple AirTag on iPhone

Earlier this year, Apple released its Find My Network-enabled trackers — AirTags. These coin-sized devices help you find lost or stolen items by piggybacking other Apple devices. So when an internet-connected iPhone user passes by an AirTag, the two devices will communicate. This is what updates the AirTag’s status and location on Apple’s servers and the map. And if the owner of the AirTag enables Lost Mode, the stranger’s connected iPhone will trigger that as well. Considering there are Apple devices almost everywhere, Tile can’t rival Apple with its limited network. In case you are planning to pick this up for yourself, here’s how to set up and use an Apple AirTag on iPhone. You can’t set up an AirTag using a Mac, unfortunately.

How to set up and use an Apple AirTag on iPhone

Setting up an AirTag

Connect AirTag to iPhone

You will need an iPhone/iPod touch running iOS 14.5 or later. Alternatively, you can use an iPad running iPadOS 14.5 or later. You can’t set up an AirTag using a Mac, unfortunately. However, you will be able to use and control it on macOS, once you connect it to your Apple ID. To set up an AirTag with an iDevice, follow the step below:

  • Make sure your device has Bluetooth enabled and an active internet connection.
  • Remove the plastic wrap on your AirTag. This should turn it on and make it beep.
  • Bring your iDevice closer to it.

Set up and use AirTags on iPhone and Mac

  • A pop-up alert will appear with a Connect button. Click it.

Set up and use AirTags on iPhone and Mac

  • You will be asked to name your AirTag. You can choose one from the list of available names or give it a custom one. Hit Continue when done.

Set up and use AirTags on iPhone and Mac

  • The pop-up will state that the AirTag will be registered to your Apple ID. It will also mention the email address and phone number associated with your Apple ID. Tap Continue.

Set up and use AirTags on iPhone and Mac

  • Wait for it to finish setting up.

Set up and use AirTags on iPhone and Mac

  • Once done, it’ll show you its current location — with you — and introduce you to some of its features. Click Done or View in Find My app, depending on what you want to do next.
  • Now you will be able to find it in the Items tab on all of your updated Apple devices — iPhones, iPads, iPods, Macs, and Apple Watches.

Using it on an iDevice

  • Launch the Find My app.
  • Head to the Items tab.

Set up and use AirTags on iPhone and Mac

  • There you will be able to see your AirTag’s name and last seen location.
  • Click on it to make it play a sound, view its battery level, navigate to it, activate Lost Mode, rename it, or remove it from your account.

Using it on a Mac

  • Open the Find My app from Launcher or Spotlight Search.
  • Head to the Items tab.

Set up and use AirTags on iPhone and Mac

  • There you will be able to see your AirTag’s name and last seen location.

Set up and use AirTags on iPhone and Mac

  • Click on it to view its battery level, navigate to it, or activate Lost Mode. Macs indeed have limited control over AirTags, for some reason.

That’s how simple the entire process is! AirTags can help you locate your luggage when traveling, car parking spot, or your backpack in a playground — the use cases are endless! Personally, I keep one in my wallet, just in case I drop or misplace it someday. It barely costs anything, and its replaceable battery lasts for around a full year.

Do you use an AirTag? If so, what for? Let us know in the comments section below.

About author

Mahmoud Itani
Mahmoud Itani

Mahmoud is an Istanbul-based Beiruti who has always sought freedom through writing. His hobbies include keeping up with tech news, writing articles about Apple devices & services, crocheting, meditating, and composing poetry. You’ll likely find him jogging at a park, swimming in open water, brainstorming at a coffeehouse, or merely lost in nature. He can be reached via [email protected] or the provided social links.