AirTags for checked baggage – the good news and the bad news
If you’re wondering if you can use AirTags to track your checked baggage and find out if it’s really where the airline says it is, one travel website tells you the answer is yes.
There is a scenario where AirTag doesn’t help, however …
Executive traveler described a few common use cases and tested one of them.
We all stood around the airport baggage carousels, waiting for the bags to be disgorged from the chute, then we made our way along this winding conveyor belt to where we were.
Could Apple’s Latest Gadget Be The Most Popular Travel Accessory Since Noise Canceling Headphones? Executive Traveler went to the airport with AirTagged luggage to find out.
The first good news is that while there may be legal or security issues, this does not appear to be the case in practice.
Obvious question # 1: The AirTag continually transmits small bluetooth burps, but don’t airlines want bluetooth gadgets to be turned off during flight?
Other baggage trackers like Tile have been doing the same for years, while passengers have wireless bluetooth headsets and headsets, so it’s really not a problem.
Also note: Although airlines have banned rechargeable lithium-ion batteries from checked baggage (including “smart baggage”), this does not apply to tiny single-use CR2023 lithium cells. On top of that, they’re already in millions of tiles and key rings sitting in bunkers.
AirTags are also likely to come in handy when your bag goes missing along the way, or just when you want to be sure it’s somewhere in the airport.
A colleague recounted how, upon arriving on a flight from Los Angeles to Sydney, his bag did not appear on the belt, and was eventually told that his bag was in fact among those that had not been loaded at LAX.
It turned out do not to be the case – all the luggage had arrived at Sydney Airport – and a quick check of the Find My app would have shown it to be somewhere nearby rather than 12,000 km away.
Likewise, if your bag is unloaded from the carousel due to the volume of luggage, or if a bag unexpectedly ends up at the oversized baggage counter, an AirTag should help you identify that fact – and not leave you standing staring. the bags of other round.
However, there is a scenario where it won’t help: tracking your bag through the airport conveyor belt system, despite the fact that there will be airport workers with iPhones working nearby. AirTag also cannot allow you to read a book until your bag announces its arrival on the carousel.
After thoroughly testing the AirTag at an airport, we can report that this is not what is happening. In this scenario, Apple’s AirTag just doesn’t work.
AirTag’s here-I-am live tracking isn’t for moving objects, unless they’re doing it at the most leisurely pace. And while the average airport baggage belt isn’t a threat to Usain Bolt, it runs too fast for the virtual hustle and bustle of the AirTag to be properly identified. […]
Even with an iPhone 12 to take advantage of the precision search, the only time the AirTagged bag appeared on my screen while it was carried along the belt was when it was literally right in front of me.
Via the loop
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