A New Backpack Is Launching with Support for Apple’s ‘Find My’ Network
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Since Apple introduced its Find My network last spring, there’s been a surprising dearth of accessories to support it, but with CES 2022 on this week, we suspect that could soon change, as new companies start to jump on board.
Today, Targus has announced a new backpack with integrated Find My support — the first new Find My compatible accessory that we’ve seen since April, when Apple announced Belkin, Chipolo, and VanMoof as its launch partners for the new technology.
In fact, it’s hard to shake the feeling that Apple offered some kind of incentive to get those first three companies on board, as nobody else seems to have shown much interest. Still, Apple is known for its patience and tends to build new third-party product ecosystems slowly. After all, just look at the glacial pace at which new HomeKit accessories have emerged since Apple launched the technology in 2014.
Targus’ Cypress Hero Backpack with Apple Find My Technology
The latest entry in its Cypress with EcoSmart collection, the new Cypress Hero Backpack with Apple Find My Technology, features the same basic design and eco-friendly construction as the standard Cypress Hero Backpack. It’s made from 26 recycled plastic water bottles, but distinguishes itself further by packing in a built-in location tracker that lets it be tracked down using the Find My app if it goes missing.
It’s not clear if the new backpack includes an Ultra Wideband chip like an AirTag does to support Precision Finding — we’ve reached out to Targus to ask, and we’ll update this article once we get a response.
Apple’s Precision Finding feature wasn’t available to third parties when the Find My Network launched last spring; however, Apple promised that it would be available in the weeks following. So far, though, no third-party accessory makers have taken advantage of it, and even if Apple released the specifications, it may still need to approve its use in commercially available accessories.
What’s So Special About It?
Since the new backpack will likely carry a premium price tag, you may be asking how this is any different from simply buying an AirTag and putting it in any backpack of your choice. According to Targus, however, the tag is “highly integrated,” making it more difficult for a potential thief to discover it and realize that they’re being tracked.
The new Cypress Hero Backpack has another interesting trick up its sleeve as well that distinguishes it from an AirTag. According to Targus, users will be able to track down a lost iPhone by pressing a button in the backpack that will “ping their phone, sending an alert to inform them of its location.” We’re not quite sure how this works, but it’s an intriguing idea nonetheless.
The tracker in Targus’ backpack also uses a replaceable battery that’s rechargeable via USB, rather than a coin cell. Which is better in this case is really a matter of personal choice, however, as the CR2032 batteries used by an AirTag can be purchased in just about any convenience store or gas station on the planet.
Notably, the Cypress Hero Backpack with Apple Find My Technology is also a CES 2022 Innovation Awards honouree. There’s no specific release date for it yet, beyond spring/summer 2022. It’s expected to retail for $149.99.