However, despite those incidents, it seems that amongst some of the competition out there, Apple’s AirTag is actually one of the safer options. This is according to a report by the New York Times in which reporter Kashmir Hill decided to test the AirTag, Tile, and a tracker by LandSeaAir to see which is the most effective and which has the best privacy protections built-in.
For those unfamiliar, LandSeaAir’s tracker relies on GPS and cellular data and requires a data plan. The upside is that it does not necessarily require nearby devices like the AirTag or Tile does, making it better at tracking in more remote locations. However, in populated areas, it seems that the AIrTag was the winner.
Also, while Tile relies on a similar system as the AirTag to help pinpoint its location, the AirTag performed the best when alerting users to an unknown device that was following them. Hill notes that in her tests where she placed the tracker on her husband, there were some issues where they could not connect their devices to the AirTag to get it to play a sound.
However, as Hill’s husband notes, “For all the bad press the AirTags have gotten, and as flaky as the detection mechanisms were, at least I was consistently getting notifications they were following me. The privacy dangers of the other trackers were way worse.”