Whether you have been the victim of a stolen car in the past, or you are simply concerned about the rise in car thefts, you know that you need to do more to keep your car safe. This is true whether you are leaving the vehicle in a car park or in your garage at home. Opting for a tracking solution could be a good idea, but not all of the devices on the market will be worth your time.
One that has become popular for tracking is the Apple AirTag. Let’s get a closer look at what this device is and see why it might not be a good option for a car tracker.
What Is an AirTag?
Apple AirTag is a small Bluetooth tracker that’s about the size of a quarter. The purpose of the device is to help people track their valuables, such as their luggage, car keys, backpacks, wallet, etc. For those smaller items, it can work well as a tracker, but it isn’t a solution that’s going to work with your vehicle for a host of reasons discussed later.
How Do AirTags Work?
If you have any familiarity with devices like Bluetooth headphones, you will have an idea of how the AirTag works. It sends out a secure Bluetooth signal that can then be detected on the Find My network. The location of the tag will be triangulated based on the strength of the signal sent to those devices. The location of the AirTag is then uploaded to the cloud and pinned on a map. This can make it easier for you to find the item you misplaced.
There are a couple of other ways to use these tracking devices.
First, you can cause the tag to beep through the Find My app. If you have an idea of where the item is but aren’t sure of the exact location, you can follow the sound of the beep until you find it. For example, if you know that you left your wallet somewhere in your office and it has an AirTag, you can use the beep feature.
Another way to use the tag is to use Precision Finding. However, it will only work with an iPhone 11 or a newer phone, since will require that the phone has a U1 ultra-wideband chip. With this option, the screen of your iPhone becomes a compass with an arrow that points in the direction of the device until you reach it.
How Can You Use Your AirTag for Your Car Tracking?
Technically, you could put the device into the vehicle and then use the app on lost mode if your car is stolen. This could help you keep track of your vehicle when it is sitting in your driveway… but not much beyond that. Keep in mind that this system is not a GPS tracker. It uses Bluetooth, which means the tag needs to be near other Apple devices to send back a signal. As soon as your vehicle is out of range of your phone, you might know it’s gone, but tracking will be difficult, as you will see below.
Problems When Using an AirTag for Your Car
However, the truth of the matter is that it’s going to be very difficult to track the car this way. This is because for the tracking to work, the device needs to be within proximity of other Apple devices such as iPhones or iPads that are up to date, so it can triangulate the location via Bluetooth.
This means trying to track the vehicle is going to be something of a nightmare. Not everyone is an iPhone user, so if the thief or someone near them doesn’t have an iPhone, you aren’t going to figure out where your car is located. You may occasionally get signals when they are near an iPhone user, but it isn’t guaranteed. The location will not be in real-time either. It will essentially be like chasing a ghost.
You will also find that it’s not going to provide a precise location or fast updates. It tends to take a couple of minutes to update. This might not seem like a problem, but when you consider that actual GPS car trackers can send out updates every 15 to 30 seconds, it is easy to see why the AirTag fails in this regard.
Of course, there are also other problems with AirTags. They have been used for stalking and now have an anti-stalking feature to try to keep people safe. It lets you know when there is an unknown AirTag in proximity that is being tracked. Naturally, this means that if you have a car thief that does have an iPhone, they will know that there is a tracker in the vehicle.
How Can You Use CarLock as a Better AirTag for Your Car?
AirTag might be a great choice for your backpack or purse, but it’s not going to work too well when you try to find your car. Therefore, you should make it a point to choose an option like CarLock, a GPS tracker that can provide precise locations in real-time. It is one of the best and simplest ways to track a car, but it can do far more than just work as a tracker.
CarLock can provide security notifications if there is any unusual activity with your vehicle. This includes alerts when the vehicle’s engine has been started and you aren’t with the vehicle and alerts for unusual vibrations caused by someone trying to break into the car. You will even be notified if the device is removed or if the vehicle is being towed.
That’s just the start of the features offered with CarLock, though. It has a mobile app and a web app, it installs in a matter of minutes, and it can provide reports on the route history and battery health. The device can even detect troubling driving, such as sharp cornering or sudden braking. When you want to keep your car safe, CarLock is a great option to consider.