Apple is making good on its promise to help its users find lost non-Apple items by officially opening up its Find My tracking network to third-party companies. This means that hardware manufacturers can now add software-side support for Apple’s localized network to track missing items.
There’s one condition: they have to abide by Apple’s Made for iPhone (MFi) accessory rules. At the moment, the items that can be tracked with the Find My tracking network include VanMoof’s S3 and X3 e-bikes, Belkin’s SoundForm Freedom True Wireless Earbuds, and the Chipolo One Spot tracking tag.
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All of these items can now rely on Apple’s crowdsourced Bluetooth network. To be able to use the feature, Apple users need to add those devices to the updated Find My app. They will be able to do so from today and can track their items through that app the same way that they’d track any missing Apple product.
For third-party devices looking to be a part of the Find My feature, they’ll have to apply to the Apple MFi program for authorized accessories. They’ll also have to “adhere to all the privacy protections of the Find My network that Apple customers rely on”. When they get the approval, they will then sport a new “Works with Apple Find My” badge. This is to indicate that they’re compatible with Apple’s network.
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