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Apple today accidentally dropped a significant hint at its rumored AirTag location trackers.
The company referenced the tracking devices in a video that was uploaded to its support channel on YouTube.
The video, with its AirTags reference, was spotted by Apple blog Appleosophy before Apple was able to remove the video from YouTube.
The video, titled “How to erase your iPhone,” steps users through the process of erasing an iPhone and restoring it to factory settings.
In this process, the tutorial shows users how to turn off Find My iPhone by going to Settings > Name > Find My > Find My iPhone.
In this menu, there is a setting to “Enable Offline Finding,” which references the AirTags in its description.
We’ve known about Apple’s AirTags for some time thanks to a handful of leaks and circulating rumors. We each leak; we get a clearer picture of the trackers. Basically, we can think of them as Tile Bluetooth trackers that were designed and built by Apple. As such, the Apple-branded item location tracker likely will be tightly integrated into the iOS experience.
Apple users will be abe able to attach an AirTag to a commonly lost item like their keys or a bag. Rumors suggest the tags may integrate with augmented reality and have super-precise tracking thanks to sensitive Ultra-Wideband technology.
A recent report suggests the AirTags may feature a magnetic wireless charging system similar to the Apple Watch, but this report has not been corroborated.
Earlier reports suggest the batteries inside the AirTag may be user-replaceable, similar to select Tile models. The AirTags also are expected to be fully waterproof, allowing users to attach them to their keys and find them even when they fall into a puddle or similar shallow water source.
Apple’s AirTags are expected to launch sometime this year, but the exact timing is uncertain. A recent report claims Apple will launch the AirTags alongside the iPhone later this fall, while another report says Apple doesn’t plan on mass-producing the devices until the second or third quarter of the year. This timeline would put the launch in the second half of the year, possibly in time for the holiday shopping season.