Apple AirTags sport a circular design

The design of the upcoming Apple AirTags has been leaked. Besides delivering proof that a new product release is imminent, animations from the iOS pairing process show details of the AirTags shape and composition. For example, pairing a new set of AirPods delivers a 3D animation, which shows the product the iPhone or iPad is communicating with in detail.

Jon Prosser shows off the goods on the YouTube channel Front Page Tech, with the full video linked above. Highlights of the AirTags can be seen starting around 6:50 in the video. The design shown in the pairing animations is similar to other leaks, which also indicated a circular shape for the coin-like location tracking fobs.

Apple AirTags were expected to arrive last year, however the product is still in the works. Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo expects the AirTags to debut this year, along with several other products including additional M1-powered Macs and some kind of augmented reality device. Apple is also expected to release new products in the AirPods lineup, and incorporate mini-LED displays in an upcoming iPad or iPhone.

AirTags utilize the capabilities of the ultra-wideband radio U1 chip to provide location services, described as "GPS at the scale of your living room". Apple first launched the U1 chip on the iPhone 11, and ever since customers have been anticipating a product similar to the Tile Mate or the Tile Sticker from Apple.

These Bluetooth item locators can be used to keep track of small items such as keys, wallets, and bags. An app on the iPhone can help determine where the item locator is placed, by viewing a map or signaling the locator to broadcast a sound. Apple's entry into the segment could be released to the public by March 2021.