I’ve done enough research on Apple Air Tags to know all the nitty-gritty Apple doesn’t want you to know. Your luck landed you on the right page to answer your questions!
Theoretically speaking, Apple Air tags don’t need Wifi to work. They only need Bluetooth to be recognized by your iPhone. However, to use the “Find My Device” application to find a lost item outside the Bluetooth range, you’ll need a Wifi connection.
Is that all? Nope! I still have more to share.
Check this article for all you need to know about Apple Air Tags and their need for Wifi.
To know how long do Apple AirTags Battery Last, check this article.
Do Apple Air Tags Need Wifi?
Apple Air Tags can’t connect to Wifi, so it’s common knowledge that they don’t need Wifi to work. However, that’s not all.
It’s true that Air Tags only need a Bluetooth connection to work, but if your lost item gets out of the Bluetooth range, you’ll need access to the internet for the Find My app to work and tell you where it is.
The Bluetooth range of Air Tags is about 30 feet. When you step outside of that range with your phone, the connection will be broken.
In that case, you’ll need to use the Wifi to open the Find My app and get notified of your lost item’s location.
Why Do Apple Air Tags Need Wifi?
We’ve established how Apple Air Tags only need Wifi when your phone is out of their range. So, why do they need it?
When your Air Tag is outside of your range, it sends signals to any nearby iPhone or Apple device in the Find My network. Then, that device sends you the location of your item via iCloud.
To gain access to that location, you need Wifi, or generally an internet connection, regardless of its type.
Do Apple Air Tags Connect to Wifi?
No, Apple Air tags can’t connect to Wifi. When you think of it, having Air Tags connect to Wifi makes little sense. Whether you lost your tagged item on the train, in the park, or inside a lecture hall, there won’t necessarily be a Wifi network.
Even if there’s a network, how would the Air Tag connect to it if there’s a password? The answer is, it’s impossible.
So, relying on Bluetooth gives the Tags a broader network to be recognized.
If the Tag could only connect to Wifi, that would limit its operation range to the areas with a ready connection.
How Do Apple Air Tags Locate Your Items?
To understand why having Wifi is better when using Apple Air Tags, you first need to know how the tiny gadgets locate your items.
Apple Air Tags have two ways of locating your item, through Precision Tracking and through the Find My Network.
When you’re inside the Tags’ Bluetooth range, which is 30 feet, you’ll be using Precision Tracking. The way this technology works, it points to the location of your items accurately, using data from the camera, gyroscope, and accelerometer on your iPhone.
If your tagged item is somewhere beneath the rug, Precision Tracking will point directly to it.
That changes when you step out of the Bluetooth range. In this case, the only option you have is to use the Find My application to find your item.
The application will ping your Air Tag and notify you of its current location, using data from the network.
How Far Does the Find My Apple Network Go?
Apple holds a lot of leverage over competitors, but if I were to name one leverage that gives the competitors a run for their money, it’d be the broad coverage of the Find My network.
The way Apple Air Tags work when they’re on Lost Mode, they send signals to any device nearby in the network. When that happens, that device sends you the location of your item via iCloud. And, of course, your data is encrypted, so you don’t have to worry about anyone getting it.
Since you primarily rely on the Find My network for your Air Tags to work, it’d be good to know how far it goes. Well, that network is huge, to say the least.
All macOS and iOS owners who have their Find My apps enabled belong in the network. When you think about it, there are millions of people that can help you find your tagged item.
Of course, you don’t need them all. In the end, you don’t expect your keys or wallet to be on the other side of the world, but the fact is comforting.
Since the Find My app is automatically downloaded on all Apple devices, no other company can compete with Apple’s huge network.
For better understanding, go through this article “How Far Can You Track an Apple AirTag“?
Does Using Wifi Mean Your Data Will Be Unsecured?
The thing with Apple Tags is that they’re secure because they only use Bluetooth to work. So, you’re the only one who gets access to your lost item’s location.
But then, when you go out of the range and have to use Wifi to use your item, does your data become unsecured?
Well, asking that question means that you still have a lot to learn about Apple.
If there’s one thing that Apple values, it’s the user’s privacy. So, no, your data won’t be open when you use Wifi for a very simple reason.
When the AirTag is recognized by a nearby iPhone or Apple device, you receive the location via iCloud.
But here’s the thing; you don’t receive the exact location of your tagged item. You only receive the location of the device’s holder, which is obviously close to your item.
So, the location of your item stays unknown to anyone besides yourself. It’s untraceable by anyone else, even if they’re part of the network.
The Final Verdict
Do Apple Air Tags need Wifi to work? No. Is Wifi necessary for you to find your tagged item? Yes, if it’s out of the Bluetooth range. Generally, having ready access to a Wifi connection means you can receive the location of your tagged item easily. Of course, this gives you peace of mind that your items won’t be lost.