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Iphone Software Apple Hardware Technology

Apple Is Releasing a Find My AirPods Feature (theverge.com) 98

For those of you worried about losing an AirPod or two, you may soon be able to find some peace of mind. According to The Wall Street Journal, Apple is adding AirPods support to the Find My iPhone app with the release of iOS 10.3, which will be released in the coming weeks. The Verge reports: Inside the app, AirPods owners will be able to see either the current or last known location of their headphones (although it seems like Apple will determine that based on where the case was last seen, not the actual earbuds). That location data is going to be pretty broad, so it'll really only be good for confirming whether your AirPods are at home or got left behind at work or a coffee shop -- it's not granular enough to say where within your home they might be. To help out with the trickier issue of locating missing headphones that have been separated from their case, Apple is able to blast sound out of each earbud (so long as it has some remaining power). That's by no means an assurance that you'll find a lost earbud, especially if you drop it outside, but it could be pretty helpful if one goes missing around the house.
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Apple Is Releasing a Find My AirPods Feature

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  • by Anonymous Coward

    If it doesn't have a headphone jack then I am not buying an iphone.

    • It also makes it easier to know where your headphones/earbuds are. (They're attached to your phone!)

      • Even if you lose them, conventional headphones / earbuds are likely to be considerably cheaper to replace if lost.
  • by thesupraman ( 179040 ) on Tuesday January 24, 2017 @04:24PM (#53730977)

    Why they pulled the app a few weeks ago that allowed you to track down a lost airpod..

    How is this NOT anticompetitive?
    Apple use their control of the app store to remove an app, and then release similar (although by the sound of it only distantly similar) functionality a few week later.

    I hope the creator of the pulled app knows a good lawyer..

    • by SeaFox ( 739806 ) on Tuesday January 24, 2017 @04:36PM (#53731063)

      Why they pulled the app a few weeks ago that allowed you to track down a lost airpod..

      How is this NOT anticompetitive?
      I hope the creator of the pulled app knows a good lawyer..

      Maybe he should ask that guy who wrote the notification app that was copied by iOS7 (iirc?) how much of a case he has.

      • Maybe he should ask that guy who wrote the notification app that was copied by iOS7 (iirc?) how much of a case he has.

        These guys should probably patent these things and then just stick it to Apple's ass (i.e. charge really steep royalties, say $10 per device) if they decide to remove the app in favor of their own. Maybe not for the notification thing (prior art on Android and all,) but certainly for the method of syncing itunes (proprietary) over wireless, and this find my airpods thing, both of which were likely patentable and Apple just yanked from the store when they decided to make a competing product. In fact it may n

      • You mean Comex? He wanted to work for Apple. Interned with them, I think even later interned with Google.

        http://www.idownloadblog.com/2... [idownloadblog.com]

        I see your point, but if we're talking about Comex (I could be wrong), he's not the best example, but a brilliant kid none the less.

    • it all depends on how that app was going about doing what it was doing. Apple's app no matter what would swamp the first one no matter how good it (the Original) was.
    • And thus they gain the functionality that Plantronics has had for five years.

      Apple is a jewelry company. When they hired that gay guy as CEO, they lost all real technical innovation- they're followers, not leaders.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward

        What the hell Tim Cook's sexual orientation have to do with anything?

        • Either way, Tim Cook seems more like a salesman than an inventor. Same problem Microsoft had with Steve Ballmer.

          • Exactly. Though in this case, there is a bit of "Queer Eye for the Straight Guy" mentality that seems to be going on.

          • Either way, Tim Cook seems more like a salesman than an inventor. Same problem Microsoft had with Steve Ballmer.

            Funny - you guys said the same about Steve Jobs until he died. Then he suddenly became the one true inventor that kept Apple alive. "Due already Apple, you should have imploded the second now that Steve died."

            Have you ever considered that not understanding Apple when Jobs was still alive is no good reason to believe you understand Apple after Steve died?

        • "Queer Eye for the Straight Guy"

          Supposedly, the stereotype I was trying to reference is that gays are awesome at fashion and appearances, but that once you scratch beneath the surface, you find broken psyches.

          Similarly, Apple is wonderful at making innovative cases that people like to look at, but the technology inside is, well, outdated.

    • by GuB-42 ( 2483988 )

      The app store has a policy against duplicating built-in functionality. Many apps have been rejected for this reason.
      Apparently, it includes future functionality.

  • alone in their "brave" design and not had to deal with this particular mess which keeps coming back to bug them.

    But what do I know? I'm not an exec trying to make their quarterly projections.

    • Stop bitching about Apple removing the headphone jack! It's a smart business decision.

      It's called: Knowing your customer base.

      Apple removed the headphone jack to prevent users from molesting the phones.

      Some other phone brands don't seem to believe their users physically capable of this and thus kept the headphone jack.
  • It will use the last place seen rather than have them emit a sound. Yup.

    • Re:Typical Apple (Score:5, Informative)

      by Roger W Moore ( 538166 ) on Tuesday January 24, 2017 @04:33PM (#53731033) Journal

      It will use the last place seen rather than have them emit a sound. Yup.

      No, according to the summary (you didn't even need to read the article!) it will do both...at least until some idiot does this while wearing the airpods and goes deaf at which point I expect the feature will be pulled.

      • Just have it start quiet and crescendo.

      • My two year Plantronics headset can sense when it's being worn. I imagine the air pods have the same features, and that the designers worked it into the program.

      • It will use the last place seen rather than have them emit a sound. Yup.

        No, according to the summary (you didn't even need to read the article!) it will do both...at least until some idiot does this while wearing the airpods and goes deaf at which point I expect the feature will be pulled.

        Doubtful, since AirPods know when they are in your ears.

    • Or, it could emit a sound.

      Loud enough for you to hear across the room.

      And then 'accidentally' do this again while you're wearing the earbuds / headphones.
  • by Anonymous Coward

    Does apple have a feature to find my wallet so I can pay them whatever they want for this brand new (innovative, non-android) feature??

  • I don't have any real pity for someone who dishes out that kind of money for headphones and can't keep track of them. They should consider putting their money into something else.
    • by SeaFox ( 739806 )

      I don't have any real pity for someone who dishes out that kind of money for headphones and can't keep track of them.

      Maybe they should get a string, or wire of some sort to keep them from getting away.

    • by Oyjord ( 810904 )

      Ah, yes, telling a stranger how to spend their money, always a good rhetorical strategy. /facepalm

      • To be fair, I did say "should consider". If they want to flush money down the toilet buying several pairs of airpods only to lose them and buy them again, I don't really care as they are wasting their own money. Similarly if they want to keep buying each new incremental release of the iPhone because they will feel like incomplete human beings if they don't, I don't care. I have other things that I prioritize my own spending on but they can do as they like with theirs.
    • by tlhIngan ( 30335 )

      I don't have any real pity for someone who dishes out that kind of money for headphones and can't keep track of them. They should consider putting their money into something else.

      AIrPods are actually quite cheap. Even among wireless headphones.

      You can buy wired headphones that cost more - much more. Sennheisers, Beats, Bose, etc., all make wired headphones that cost more than AirPods. They also make wireless ones, also which cost more. Granted, they are much larger, so instead of losing them, you're more li

  • by wbr1 ( 2538558 ) on Tuesday January 24, 2017 @04:46PM (#53731113)
    Based on last location of case? Junk.

    If they are paired you can have them emit sound.
    While connected you can use GPS and a small table to record the phones location every minute. Round robin it for maybe an hour. Stop writing table when unpaired.
    Then when you need to find them you can backtrack from where you were last paired, up to an hour before that. You can even map it.

    Most likely they are within 30 feet the last paired location, or someone at that location picked them up. This is NOT rocket surgery. Come on Apple have some courage.

    • While connected you can use GPS and a small table to record the phones location every minute. Round robin it for maybe an hour. Stop writing table when unpaired. Then when you need to find them...

      Then when you need to find them...your phone's battery is dead.

    • They have courage, remember? They used it to remove the headphone jack. Or maybe they used it up.
    • Based on last location of case? Junk.

      If they are paired you can have them emit sound. While connected you can use GPS and a small table to record the phones location every minute. Round robin it for maybe an hour. Stop writing table when unpaired. Then when you need to find them you can backtrack from where you were last paired, up to an hour before that. You can even map it.

      Most likely they are within 30 feet the last paired location, or someone at that location picked them up. This is NOT rocket surgery. Come on Apple have some courage.

      The AirPods themselves don't have GPS or WiFi, IIRC.

      If they did, don't you think Apple would be using it? In fact, Apple would likely have the AirPod start calling for help when it detected an increasing distance between itself and whatever it was last paired with. But they simply can't add GPS to AirPods without sucking some serious battery life.

      In fact, I wonder if Apple could monitor the BT strength from the AirPods in a background process running on the Paired Device(s). Once a second shouldn't affe

    • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 )

      No need to keep track of the location constantly, wasting battery power on GPS. Just do one reading every time they unpair. If they are paired they are close by.

      The real problem is that this won't help you at all if one of the pods falls out of your pocket while turned off. The short battery life means you will want to turn them off when not in use. This is probably by design, Apple can make a fortune selling replacement earbuds.

  • by surfdaddy ( 930829 ) on Tuesday January 24, 2017 @04:51PM (#53731139)

    How about a "Find my Headphone Jack" feature?

  • ... were right there in my ears all along.

  • If they're lost nearby, why can't they work like those keyfinder tags? The phone sends a BT command that turns them into a bluetooth beacon. An app then shows the signal strength and you get to play "hotter or colder" while waving your phone around.
  • Mine are always are the end of a wire.
  • by JustAnotherOldGuy ( 4145623 ) on Tuesday January 24, 2017 @06:13PM (#53731553)

    Wow, an app to help you find your earbuds!

    You know what would be even better? What would be even better is if you didn't need an app to find your own fucking earbuds.

    The lack of an earphone jack is one key reason that I'd never buy an iPhone. Mostly I like Apple gear, but this "fuck the users, we'll do what we want" attitude is just unbearable. Branding the "fuck you" attitude as "courage" is even more insulting.

  • Instead of an app, why is there not a reminder setting?

    This setting could be triggered if the phone has a set of airpods paired with it, they become disconnected, and the phone moves more than say 100 feet since it disconnected? Once triggered, the phone rings/vibrates and alerts the user that the airpods may have been left behind.

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