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Do AirTags Work With Android Phones?

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AirTags include NFC chips that are readable by Android NFC-capable phones. Though Android cannot be paired with AirTag, it can retrieve the owner’s details once the owner has put the AirTag in “Lost Mode.” If you want to find out more about how AirTags work with Android phones, we’ve got you covered in this article.


Do AirTags Work With Android Phones?


We’ve also detailed what to do if you come across an item with an AirTag attached. Plus, if you’re looking to purchase a tracking device, we discuss the pros and cons for AirTags and its competitor, Tile.


Do AirTags Work With Android Phones?


Yes, they do. You can use your NFC–capable Android smartphone to read AirTags, should you come across one and the owner has put it in “Lost Mode.” To help reunite the item with its owner, do the following:



  1. Place the back of your Android phone on the white side of the AirTag.

  2. Click on the notification that displays on your screen.

  3. A website will launch with information about the AirTag including its serial number.


    • You may see a message included by the owner about how to contact them.




Can I Pair My AirTags With My Android?


Unfortunately, AirTags are not currently designed to be paired with Android devices to be used for tracking items.


Lost Mode and NFC-Enabled Phones


A lost AirTag can be identified by any NFC-enabled iPhone or Android device when the owner has put the AirTag into “Lost Mode.” By bringing an NFC-enabled device close to the AirTag, information about it and its owner is displayed so the owner can be contacted to have the item returned to them.


AirTags vs. Tile


Next, we’ll look at the feature pros and cons for AirTag and Tile; their privacy features, and things to consider when deciding which tracker may be better for you.



AirTag


The Apple AirTag was recently released in April 2021 and has joined Tile in the tracking device market. It has been essentially designed with the iPhone owner in mind – as it integrates directly to the “Find My” app (iOS base software). AirTags are priced at $29 or $99 for a pack of four.


AirTag Pros



  • Its most impressive feature – “Precision Finding” is available on the iPhone 11 or newer. It uses ultra-wideband technology to help find items down to within half an inch, making it more accurate than Tile.

  • “Precision Finding” can be used when you have a general idea of where an item is. By pinging your AirTag, you can get its distance away from you in feet, with arrows directing you to it.

  • Pairing your mobile device with AirTag is straightforward and intuitive. The tracker is linked to your AppleID therefore no need to create a separate account.

  • Using the “Find My” app, you can see your AirTagged items on a map and ping them to find their location.

  • It’s integrated with Siri. Siri can be used as a shortcut to ask where an item is.

  • It comes with an easily replaceable battery that should last approximately one year.


AirTag Cons



  • Currently, there is only one type of AirTag to choose from with limited design functionality.

  • It comes with no adhesive padding or anything to attach to items. Therefore, you’d need to make an additional purchase[s] for securing it to your items.


Tile


The first Tile devices were launched in 2015 – with the Tile mobile app to assist Android and iOS device owners in finding their items. You can pick up a Tile tracker for $24 and a discounted price on multi-packs.


Tile Pros



  • Tile offers a wide variety of models to choose from and is compatible with Android, iOS, and Windows.

  • Some gadgets, including laptops and headphones, come with a Tile built-in.

  • You get to choose from four types designed to easily attach to your item straight away.

  • By pushing the button on a Tile, you get to ring the device that it’s paired with – handy for when you’ve misplaced your phone.

  • By paying for the Tile Premium service, starting at $29.99 per year, you can set up alerts that remind you when you leave something behind; also, receive notifications when your Tile battery needs replacing.


Tile Cons



  • Setup is done via the Tile app. Though straightforward, it’s not integrated with the device’s base software like AirTag with “Find My.”

  • Tile can connect to other devices on the Tile network by pinpointing a location to your tracker; however, Tile’s network is smaller (in its millions) and depends on Tile devices or those using the app. Apple’s network, on the other hand, is fast approaching the billion mark.


AirTag vs. Tile Privacy


When using tracking devices, privacy is a significant concern since they can be used for negative purposes e.g., potentially used for tracking someone by slipping the device into their car, pocket, or bag.


Unlike Tile, Apple has several measures in place to ensure the AirTags are being used the right way.


An AirTag is only set up by its owner and linked to their AppleID; it can’t be activated on behalf of someone else. iOS devices can recognize and alert their owner if an unpaired/unknown AirTag is traveling with them.


An AirTag also plays its chime when separated from its owner for some time and moving location to draws attention to it.


Which One Would Be a Better Fit?


Both are very effective tracking devices great at promptly finding misplaced items; however, the areas they both excel in differ.


If aesthetics and privacy are important to you then the AirTag is a pretty stylish device, loaded with privacy features. Tile is slightly cheaper and comes equipped with a sticker or keyring loop to attach to your items.


It is worth considering the devices you currently use. If you use Android mobile devices, Tile would be a better fit since AirTags are not designed for tracking using Android devices. iOS users are better off with an AirTag since they are specifically designed to work with them.


Additional FAQs


Why Can’t I Pair AirTags With Android Phone?


You can’t pair an AirTag with your Android device because AirTags are not designed to work that way. The “Find My” app, only available on iOS, handles the pairing and tracking. However, since the AirTag is fitted with NFC, NFC-compatible devices can read AirTags when the owner has put it in “Lost Mode.” This is the only compatible feature that Android phones currently have with AirTags.


Android Owners Help Reunite AirTag Owners


Location tracker AirTag by Apple has specifically been designed to track and find items using Apple devices only. If an AirTag has been put into “Lost Mode,” an NFC-compatible Android device can be used to read and retrieve the owner’s details – and potentially be a life-saver.


Now that you know how an Android phone works with an AirTag and how its compatibility compares with Tile – have you come across someone’s AirTag and helped to return the item to them? Which device do you think is better – AirTag or Tile? Share your opinions in the comments section below.

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