Third-Party Accessory Makers Can Access U1 Chip in iPhones for Find My

Apple today announced the launch of its Find My network accessory program, which lets third-party accessories integrate with the ‌Find My‌ app.

find my lost mode
Initial ‌Find My‌ accessories from VanMoof, Belkin, and Chipolo will work with ‌Find My‌ using Bluetooth, but Apple is developing a U1 specification for chipset makers that will let third-party devices take advantage of the U1 Ultra Wideband chip built into the iPhone 11 and iPhone 12 models.

According to Apple, third-party accessories that offer Ultra Wideband support for the U1 chip will be able to offer a "more precise, directionally aware experience when nearby," making tracking an item to a specific location easier, especially when that item is close by.

Items that have Ultra Wideband will be able to be tracked more precisely with devices that have a U1 chip, which includes all of the ‌iPhone 11‌ and ‌iPhone 12‌ models.

Apple's decision to open up access to the U1 chip in the iPhones for ‌Find My‌ will put third-party accessories that integrate Ultra Wideband on par with the rumored AirTags. ‌AirTags‌ will feature U1 chip support for more accurate tracking, according to rumors, so Apple will have no specific edge over competitors with the way that the ‌Find My‌ program is set up.

There has been some pushback from Tile on rumors of ‌AirTags‌, so Apple likely wanted to avoid any kind of situation where it looked like its own accessories were getting special treatment not available to third-party accessories.

Apple says that its U1 specification will be available to device makers "later this spring," so it will still be some time before we see Ultra Wideband-compatible accessories that work with the ‌Find My‌ app.

Top Rated Comments

nattK Avatar
7 months ago
I'm hoping that the "Pairing Lock" extends to the AirPods family soon with a firmware update. It never sat right with me that someone can steal my AirPods and basically start using them as theirs after resetting the AirPods. Otherwise it's crazy how the Belkin earbuds have this but not AirPods
Score: 16 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Analog Kid Avatar
7 months ago

This really makes me wonder if AirTags will be released, seems kind of strange for Apple to give these options to other manufacturers.
I think this is why AirTags have been delayed-- someone made the decision that they needed to open up to 3rd party support before they released a 1st party solution to avoid either legal issues, bad PR, or most likely both.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Spock Avatar
7 months ago
This really makes me wonder if AirTags will be released, seems kind of strange for Apple to give these options to other manufacturers.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
breather Avatar
7 months ago
Everythings is (not) lost!
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Apple_Robert Avatar
7 months ago
I think this is good for consumers and Apple, provided there are no privacy leaks.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
TheYayAreaLiving Avatar
7 months ago
Airtags coming soon? perhaps?
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Related Stories

airtag shipped order

AirTag Orders Moving to 'Shipped' Status for More Customers

Thursday April 29, 2021 5:44 am PDT by
AirTag orders are beginning to be marked as "shipped" for more customers on Apple's online store around the world, with most deliveries set to begin arriving to customers on Friday, April 30 launch day. A few lucky customers already received their AirTag orders earlier this week, providing us with a closer look at the unboxing experience. Priced at $29 each or $99 for a four pack, users can ...
chipolo 1

Chipolo Announces New 'ONE Spot' Item Tracker With Find My Integration

Wednesday April 7, 2021 11:17 am PDT by
Following Apple's official launch of the Find My network accessory program, Chipolo has announced the launch of the new ONE Spot item tracker that is one of the first devices that will be trackable using the Find My app. The ONE Spot is designed to work exclusively with the Find My app, and it gives us a closer look at how third-party Find My accessories will work and perhaps hints at what...
find my test app 1

Apple's Third-Party Find My Accessory Program Gets Closer to Launch With New Test App

Tuesday April 6, 2021 11:06 am PDT by
Apple is getting closer to launching the third-party program that will allow item trackers and other Bluetooth devices to be tracked using the Find My app, based on the launch of a new app. As noted by TechCrunch, Apple Sunday introduced the Find My Certification Asst. app, which was created exclusively for Made for iPhone (MFi) licensees who need to test their accessories with the Find My...
airtags straps featured

Third-Party AirTags Accessories Continuing to Surface Ahead of Apple Event on April 20

Monday April 19, 2021 8:34 pm PDT by
Back in January, we saw a few promotional images for third-party AirTags accessories from both Nomad and Spigen's Cyrill brand, and while Apple's item trackers have yet to launch, we're now seeing more signs of similar accessories starting to show up in the wild. An increasing number of sellers on eBay, Walmart, Etsy, and other online marketplaces are now offering AirTags holders for sale as...
precision finding developer mode

AirTag Precision Finding Interface Includes Hidden 'Developer Mode'

Thursday May 6, 2021 1:32 am PDT by
A frustrated AirTag owner has inadvertently discovered the existence of a hidden "developer mode" in the on-screen interface that Find My displays when the Precision Finding feature is activated to help locate one of Apple's item trackers. Precision Finding is a feature that provides users with specific on-screen directions for finding a nearby AirTag. iPhones with a U1 chip, which includes ...
works with apple find my

VanMoof and Apple Spent Nine Months Working to Integrate E-Bikes Into Apple's Find My Ecosystem

Tuesday April 13, 2021 12:50 pm PDT by
Last week, Apple announced the launch of its Find My network accessory program, allowing compatible third-party accessories to be tracked in the ‌Find My‌ app right alongside Apple devices. The first products that work with the Find My app will include the new Chipolo item tracker, new Belkin earbuds, and two electric bikes from VanMoof. Given that VanMoof is based in the Netherlands, Dutch...
separation alerts

New Separation Alerts in iOS 15 Let You Know If You Leave an AirTag or Apple Device Behind

Monday June 7, 2021 3:51 pm PDT by
Apple in iOS 15 is adding new Separation Alerts to the Find My app, which will let you know if you leave an Apple device, a device attached to an AirTag, or a Find My-enabled third-party device behind. Enable separation alerts, and if you leave a device, AirTag, or compatible third-party item behind, your iPhone will alert you with notifications and Find My will give you directions to your...
f1618938547

Apple Announces AirTag Tracking Devices Starting At $29 Each

Tuesday April 20, 2021 10:10 am PDT by
Apple today announced AirTag, a Tile-like Bluetooth tracking device that's designed to be attached to items like keys and wallets for tracking purposes, letting you find them right in the Find My app. AirTags are accessories for attaching to backpacks, luggage, and other items. Any U1 device like the iPhone 12 can be used for precision finding to guide you right to the item you're looking...
apple find my network

Apple Announces Find My Network With Support for Third-Party Devices

Wednesday April 7, 2021 10:06 am PDT by
Apple today announced the launch of its Find My network accessory program, which is designed to allow third-party Bluetooth devices to be tracked in the Find My app right alongside your Apple devices. According to Apple, the first accessory companies to take advantage of the new Find My integration include Belkin, Chipolo, and VanMoof, with devices set to be available beginning next week. ...
maxresdefault

Hands-On With Apple's New AirTags

Friday April 30, 2021 2:41 pm PDT by
After years of waiting for the AirTags to debut, launch day is finally upon us and AirTags are now in the hands of customers. We got our AirTags in the mail today and thought we'd share a hands-on look for those who are still waiting for their orders or debating whether AirTags might be useful. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. As you probably know by now, AirTags...