Apple's rumored Tile-like accessory discovered in iOS 13

With the public release of iOS 13.2 today, yet another clue has been discovered hinting at a future where Apple launches a Tile-like tracking device.

UpdateIn a separate report, it looks like Apple may have just acquired the trademark rights to “AirTag”. MacRumors has the info here, detailing how the trademark rights are being handled by a law firm called Baker & McKenzie — one that Apple has worked with in the past.

Nothing is confirmed, and even the report indicates that there isn’t a “smoking gun” here, but it does seem interesting timing at the very least. If you’re curious about the trademark rights situation with “AirTag”, check out that report.

The original report continues below.

According to a report from 9to5Mac, Apple is planning on calling its small, round tracking device “AirTag”. The report states that a folder within the mobile operating system’s filesystem reveals the name “AirTag”. This device will be paired with the owner’s iPhone, similarly to AirPods, and allow them to track the AirTags from their device.

Currently, these assets are placeholders, containing images of AirPods, HomePod, and other devices, so they don’t reveal much about the product’s actual design. One feature confirmed by the assets is the ability to change the product’s battery since there is a video asset named “BatterySwap”.

Here’s the folder referenced in the article:

Unfortunately, just because the reference was discovered within the public launch of iOS 13.2, it doesn’t necessarily tell us when the new AirTag Tile-like tracking device will actually launch. It was rumored pretty heavily before Apple’s September event (where it introduced the iPhone 11 and iPhone 11 Pro) that the company would unveil the device then.

However, that did not happen.

All of this originally cropped up back in April, when it was rumored that Apple was planning to rebuild its “Find My” apps and basically consolidate them into one experience. The Tile-like tracking device was rumored at the same time. Since then, the new “Find My” experience has launched to the public, but the tracking device has not.

Since then, we’ve heard that the tracking device will take advantage of Ultra Wideband technology, making it incredibly accurate for location purposes. Indeed, the new iPhones do take advantage of UWB with Apple’s custom U1 chip.

It has also been reported that the tracking device will have a dedicated “Items” tab within the redesigned Find My app, and the device may be small and circular in design. iOS 13 itself has been hinting at the device’s launch since June.

Is this an accessory from Apple you are eagerly anticipating? Let us know in the comments below.