Why Are Airtags Magnetic?


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Written By Dinu Sri

Dr. H. T. D. S. Madusanka is an electronic enthusiastic, involved in research and development.

A lot of people who are considering buying Apple Airtags have many questions in their minds. And why not? It’s a new device, after all. So people want to know- how does AirTag work? Another prominent question people ask is whether Airtags are magnetic.

If you are among those people, you are lucky to have found this page. Because here, I’ll discuss why and how Airtags are magnetic and how you can attach Airtags using magnets.

Besides, you’ll also know about magnetic and other accessories for Airtags. So without contemplating, let’s get this show on the road.

Why Are Airtags Magnetic?

Airtags are not entirely magnetic. However, they have a little magnet in the back. This little magnet helps them from moving around in a place or being shaken out of it. Most importantly, it helps the Airtag stay attached to a surface, especially a metal one. So, the magnet can hold Airtag to some extent.

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Apple Airtag is made out of stainless steel. On top of that, it has a polished coating that makes the device shiny and smooth. But all in all, the outer body of this tiny tracking device is pure metal. Its small size and light weight make it easily stay in a place.

But a little magnet on the back helps it further to stay attached to a surface. That’s right, Airtags have magnets on their back. It isn’t that much and doesn’t make the whole device magnetic. It is there to help Airtag stay attached to a surface, especially a metal one.

There is a built-in speaker inside an Airtag. The magnet in the Airtag is located inside the speaker coil. So, it’s not that the entire Airtag is magnetic. A small magnet inside the device creates a weak magnetic field that helps it clings to metal surfaces.

Are Airtags Magnets?

We learned that there is a small magnet inside the Airtag speaker coil. This tiny magnet helps the device stay attached to metal surfaces. That’s why some people say Airtags are magnetics or they are magnets. But that’s not true.

A little magnet on the back prevents the device from moving here and there. Besides, it protects the device from getting shaken off a surface while walking or running. But they are not strong magnets that you can use for anything else. Since it’s a tracking device made of metal, many people assume it’s a magnet.

Although Airtags are not magnetic, there are many accessories that use magnets to keep this device firmly attached to a surface. Apple itself has many magnetic accessories for Airtag. Besides, you will find many magnetic third-party accessories that work pretty well.

But you must remember that a little magnet inside doesn’t make it a magnet or magnetic that you can use for other purposes. For example, you can’t stick a note on your refrigerator door using an Airtag. It’s simply not that powerful.

Will Magnets Affect Airtags?

Since Airtag is a tracking device, and magnets have something to do with coordination, tracking, compassing, etc., it’s normal to have questions like whether it will affect the performance of an Airtag or if it influences the Airtag while sending out location data.

While all these queries are legit, the answer to these questions is no. Magnets won’t affect Airtags in any way. It cannot intimidate an Airtag. See, Airtags are very modern and sophisticated devices. They have advanced technologies that make them very good at their work.

With a U1 chip, Ultra-Wideband Technology, and Low Energy Bluetooth, this device is powerful enough to send out exact location information and coordination. Apple has provided these technologies to this tiny device so that it can send exact information to your iPhone.

Besides, Apple uses very strong and secure encryptions for this tracker so that nobody can hack or reengineer it. It also has a very powerful firewall. So, you won’t have to worry about its security.  

How Do Airtags Stick To Things?

We already know that Airtags have a little magnet in it. That’s why they slightly stick to metal surfaces. But what about surfaces that are not metal? For example, your wallet and backpack. Well, Airtags are very lightweight. So, they generally stay where you keep them on a flat surface.

But you can’t expect it whenever you are walking or running. That’s why there are accessories to hold Airtags. You will find a wide range of various accessories for this little tracking device. Apple has many of its accessories for Airtag. Apart from them, you will find a lot of third-party accessories for holding your Airtag.

These accessories come in various types, shapes, and materials. You will find Silicone cases with strong adhesive on the back. These cases can securely hold your Airtag and firmly attach it to various surfaces. There are also many rugged cases for extreme environments. You will find various keyrings for keys.

Airtag also has magnetic cases and accessories that you use on metal surfaces. Besides, there are many basic cases as well as many accessories like dog collars, pet collars, etc., for clinging to your pet. So, you can see that there are vast options available to choose from for attaching your Airtag to various surfaces.

How To Attach Airtag?

Now we know what accessories can we use with Airtags. At this point, you might want to know how you can put your Airtag into an accessory and how you can attach it to your things like wallets, keys, backpacks, phones, etc.

Here we will see how to put up an Airtag to a surface. Follow the steps below:

  • Firstly, you have to select the accessory for your Airtag. If you want to use it for your keys, you have to select keyrings. There are various types of cases available for various surfaces. You will find different sets of accessories for pets. So, select one based on your need.
  • Then remove the plastic wrap from your Airtag and give it a tap. You will hear a sound. Your Airtag is awake now.
  • Now, turn the Bluetooth on from your iPhone and place the Airtag near it. Your phone and Airtag will be automatically connected.
  • The next step is to put the Airtag inside that accessory. Each one of them has a safe house for holding your Airtag. So, make sure it’s properly installed.
  • Finally, attach the Airtag to the selected surface. Firmly attach it, so it doesn’t drop while walking, running, or violently shaking.

Now, your Airtag is securely attached to its surface or with your keys. It will start tracking right away.

Can You Attach Airtag To Metal Surfaces?

Yes, you can attach your Airtag to metal surfaces. Since it has a little magnet, you can easily attach it to any metal surface like your car body, bike, iPads, and other stuff. But as the magnet is not very powerful, your Airtag might drop if that metal surface shakes violently.

That’s why Apple has introduced magnetic cases to hold your Airtag. These cases have multiple magnets in them. As a result, they are very powerful and can hold your Airtag to its surface very firmly. Apart from Apple, other third-party brands also offer good magnetic cases. So, you can use them for metal surfaces.

Are Airtags Sticky?

No, Airtags are not sticky. They don’t have any adhesive on their back. So, you cannot stick them firmly to any surfaces. However, many accessories have adhesive on their back. You can call them sticky.

You will find accessories from Apple and other brands. Among them, the Silicone cases with adhesive on their back are very popular. Because they have a strong adhesive on their back, you can firmly attach them to any surface.

Besides Silicone cases, many basic cases are also available with an adhesive back. So, even though Airtags are not sticky, their accessories do it for them.

What Are The Magnetic Accessories For Airtag?

We already know that there are many magnetic accessories for Airtags. Some are made and sold by Apple, and the rest are from other brands. I will show you and discuss some of the popular magnetic cases for Airtags.

As I said, Apple has its own Magnetic case for Airtags. These cases have magnets on top. So they will hold your Airtag securely and, at the same time, be firmly attached to a metal surface. There are four colors available for these cases. You can choose from Deep Navy, Electric Orange, Sunflower, and White.

Apart from Apple cases, you will find many other magnetic cases from various brands. These cases are made of various materials, including silicone, rubber, etc. They have magnets on them. That’s why you can attach them firmly to any surface. They can also hold sticky notes on your refrigerator door and many other stuff.

Can Airtag Be Used To Track A Car?

Airtag is a tracking device. It can track anything you attach with it and send location information. So, if you attach it or keep it in a car, it will keep tracking it and send you location information. But you will have to be within the Bluetooth range to see the direction in a map from your Find My App.

But I must say, tracking another person’s car is illegal, and you could go to jail for that. Some car theft incidents happened in Canada where thieves used Airtag to follow the cars. But you can always use it in your own car and see it’s in the right place where you’ve parked it.

How Are Airtags Powered?

Airtag is a battery-powered device. You don’t need to charge its battery. In fact, there is no option to charge it since it has no charging port. Once the battery power is entirely over, you will have to throw it away and replace it with a new one.

You will have to use a CR2032 battery with your Airtag. This battery generally goes for about one year with moderate use. But make sure the battery doesn’t have any bitterant coating on it; otherwise, your Airtag might get damaged.

Since there is no other option to charge your battery, you should keep track of your Airtag’s battery level. Finding it dead in the middle of a search would be frustrating.

Final Thoughts

Apple Airtags are not magnetic. Although there is a little magnet in it, that’s only for attaching the device loosely to a metal surface. You must take help from accessories if you want to put them on a surface firmly. After reading my article, I hope you have no further confusion regarding this.

References

O’Flaherty, K. (2021, May 22). Apple AirTags: What All iPhone Users Should Know. Retrieved from Forbes.com:

Goldheart, S. (2021, May 1). AirTag Teardown: Yeah, This Tracks. Retrieved from iFixit: