Apple to let users find third-party products with Find My network

Our Bureau Mumbai | Updated on April 08, 2021

Initially, new products from Belkin, Chipolo, and VanMoof will be available as part of the network

Apple’s Find My network now offers new third-party finding experiences, the company has announced.

The tech giant has introduced an updated Find My app, allowing users to find third-party products using the network’s capabilities.

As Apple explained, “Part of the Made for iPhone (MFi) Program, the Find My network accessory program is designed for any accessory developer looking to connect an existing or new product to the Find My network.”

The global Find My network is now being extended to third-party device manufacturers to build products utilising the service, so their customers can use the Find My app to locate and keep track of the important items.

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The Find My network is a crowdsourced network of hundreds of millions of Apple devices that use Bluetooth wireless technology to detect missing devices or items nearby, and report their approximate location back to the owner.

“For more than a decade, our customers have relied on Find My to locate their missing or stolen Apple devices, all while protecting their privacy,” said Bob Borchers, Apple’s vice-president of Worldwide Product Marketing. “Now we’re bringing the powerful finding capabilities of Find My, one of our most popular services, to more people with the Find My network accessory program.

Initially, new products from Belkin, Chipolo, and VanMoof will be available as part of the network, beginning next week. Users will be able to find VanMoof’s latest S3 and X3 e-bikes, Belkin’s SOUNDFORM Freedom True Wireless Earbuds, and the Chipolo ONE Spot item finder with the updated app.

To leverage the network, third-party products must adhere to all the privacy protections of the Find My network.

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“Approved products can be added to the new Items tab and will feature a “Works with Apple Find My” badge to clearly communicate to users that the product is compatible with the Find My network and the Find My app,” Apple said.

Adding third-party products to the Items tab in the Find My app will require users to have an iPhone or iPod touch with iOS 14.3 or later, iPad with iPadOS 14.3 or later, or Mac with macOS Big Sur 11.1 or later. Customers must have an Apple ID and be signed in to their iCloud account with Find My enabled.

Draft specification

Additionally, Apple is also announcing a draft specification for chipset manufacturers that will be released later this spring.

“With this, third-party device makers will be able to take advantage of Ultra Wideband technology in U1-equipped Apple devices, creating a more precise, directionally aware experience when nearby,” it said.

Published on April 08, 2021

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