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Apple AirTag popularity helps item tracker sales soar in Q1 2023

Published Apr 25th, 2023 7:55AM EDT
Apple AirTag
Image: Apple Inc.

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As the COVID-19 pandemic eased, more people started traveling in the first months of 2023. Research by Circana shows that sale revenue for item trackers has increased by 82% in the US, and unit sales grew 63% in January and February combined.

Although not named, Apple AirTag is one of the most popular item trackers available. Released during the pandemic, owning an AirTag makes more sense than ever. The research shows that adding an item tracker to luggage and travel accessories is what most people are doing nowadays.

“Despite economic headwinds facing consumers, spending on travel is expected to continue to pick up in 2023 and 2024, presenting a unique opportunity for travel-adjacent technology products,” said Ben Arnold, executive director and industry analyst at Circana. “Categories like item trackers, on-the-ear headphones, and portable power packs that keep travelers connected, entertained, and powered-on while on the go have had positive growth in a challenging first quarter.”

Why is AirTag so important when traveling?

Although we heard a few stories of people misusing AirTags, the item tracker is helpful for travel. You can keep them in your luggage, backpack, and even headphones. With the Ultrawideband chip inside, you can use the Precision Find feature on your iPhone Find My app to discover when your luggage will arrive from the plane.

Since AirTag uses Apple’s Find My network, you can even discover if your luggage is inside the plane or if it has arrived with you to your destination.

For example, I once traveled to Los Angeles and had a stopover in Costa Rica. It was so quick that they couldn’t move my luggage from one plane to another. When I got to LAX, my luggage was still in Costa Rica – and, fortunately, I knew that before the flight company did.

The next day, I discovered they had sent my luggage to Guatemala and then to a flight to Los Angeles. Less than 20 hours later, I knew my luggage had arrived, and I went to the airport before the flight company called me just because I knew my luggage had arrived.

Although AirTags can’t prevent flight companies from losing your luggage, at least now you can know where the luggage is.

José Adorno Tech News Reporter

José is a Tech News Reporter at BGR. He has previously covered Apple and iPhone news for 9to5Mac, and was a producer and web editor for Latin America broadcaster TV Globo. He is based out of Brazil.