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Apple enables Precision Finding to locate unknown AirTag, reveals what’s changed with the latest firmware updates

Published Dec 20th, 2022 8:15AM EST
Apple AirTag
Image: Apple Inc.

Seldom does Apple announce what’s changed with AirTag and AirPods firmware updates. After two new firmware versions available for the company’s item tracker, it has announced the new features and fixes that arrived with updates 2.0.24 and 2.0.36.

Apple updated a support page a few days ago, and MacRumors spotted it. While the latest AirTag firmware update, version 2.0.36, only resolves an issue with the accelerometer not activating in specific scenarios, it was version 2.0.24 that brought an important update.

According to Apple, the previous firmware version allows you to locate an unknown AirTag detected moving with you using Precision Finding. This feature is available with iPhones with the U1 chip.

In addition, if your iPhone is awake, a notification alerts you when an AirTag that’s separated from its owner is traveling with you and emitting a sound to indicate it has been moved. These two features require iOS 16.2 or later, so Apple updated the AirTag firmware before supporting these functions on iPhone devices.

Here are the release notes:

AirTag Firmware Update 2.0.36

Resolves an issue with the accelerometer not activating in certain scenarios.

AirTag Firmware Update 2.0.24

  • Enables Precision Finding to help locate an unknown AirTag detected moving with you.
  • If your iPhone is awake, a notification alerts you when an AirTag separated from its owner is traveling with you and emitting a sound to indicate it has been moved. 

These features require iOS 16.2 or later.

How to check the AirTag firmware version, and how to update it?

To check the firmware version, follow these steps:

  1. Open the Find My app.
  2. Tap the Items tab.
  3. Select your AirTag in the list of items.
  4. Tap the name of your item tracker, and the serial number and firmware version will appear.

Apple says that firmware updates are delivered “periodically” while the accessory is in Bluetooth range of your iPhone. That said, make sure your item tracker is nearby. Putting your iPhone on the charger may help to trigger the update.

José Adorno
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 American broadcaster TV Globo. He is based out of Brazil.