If you own a pair of AirPods, inevitably, one is going to go missing. Fortunately, Apple is releasing some basic measures to help you find a lost earbud, if not the entire case.
The Wall Street Journal reports that Apple is adding AirPods support to the Find My iPhone app with the release of iOS 10.3, which is supposed to launch to the public in the coming weeks.
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.
It’s good to see Apple release something like this, as there was obviously a demand for it. Someone created a “find my AirPods” app shortly after the earbuds were released — but Apple pulled the app from its App Store for unstated reasons.
That app actually went a step further in trying to help you locate a lost earbud, using Bluetooth signal strength to let you know if you’re getting warmer or colder in your search for the missing device. It wasn’t a perfect method either, but it may have been a helpful option if blasting music out of them isn’t working.