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Keep your bag close by enabling Notify When Left Behind for AirTag


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If you often forget to take your keys or bag before you leave, here’s how to use AirTag to remind you so you will never leave your valuables alone again.

The introduction of AirTag has expanded the basic concept of Find My and the network to more than Apple’s hardware ecosystem. If you’ve lost an item, just like an iPhone or AirPod, you could easily search the app for the last known location of incorrectly installed devices, as well as perform some remote actions, such as locking or dropping audio.

While AirTag could mostly be used to find items that have been placed somewhere and forgotten, this type of thinking is not as effective because people often remember the item some time after they left it. If you were unlucky and remember a long time later, you could do so at a great distance from it, extending the download time.

Time to remember and how long it takes to act to return the item are crucial, especially in areas with large populations like the city. For valuable items, such as a bag, wallet, or keys, they may be picked up and moved, and a smart thief discards the AirTag if it is easily visible, reducing the chance of you returning your items.

For cases such as a wallet, there is an additional problem of direct theft, as pickpockets can escape with the goods without the victim being aware until it is too late.

Of course, Apple has an established system that can help with that, and those are separation warnings

Notify when lagging behind

What AirTag does can help in these situations is to let you know that AirTag is separating from your iPhone. For example, a warning may be issued when you move the iPhone a short distance from the AirTag or vice versa.

In fact, you are warned when you leave the AirTag behind or if the AirTag walks away from you in theft. This reduces the time it takes to become aware that something is wrong, so act accordingly.

Setting Notify When Left Behind allows only a few taps.

The system is not limited to AirTag and iPhone. It can also be enabled if you own an Apple Watch and leave the iPhone in a location, for example, where the Apple Watch displays a separation warning that applies to the iPhone.

How to Enable Notify When Left Behind for AirTag on iPhone

  • Open up Find My.
  • Touch Items.
  • Touch AirTag or the name you gave AirTag.
  • Scroll down and select Notify when lagging behind.
  • Touch switching next to Notify When Left Behind to turn green.

Exceptions to the rules

Although convenient, the system may not be useful in all situations. For example, if you have an AirTag attached to your backpack and leave it at home to do work where it’s not needed, you won’t benefit from a warning at that time.

Indeed, with the exception of very commonly used items such as keys, the need for a warning really only applies if you are not at home or in a place that you feel is safe enough to store things. You want a warning when you are in public.

What you can do is use the “Notify me except in” alert feature, which will prevent you from sending notifications when AirTag is in certain locations, such as home or work.

You can easily add a custom safe location to disable alerts, as well as to remove them from the list.

You can easily add a custom safe location to disable alerts, as well as to remove them from the list.

To do this, you must access the Notifications section when you lag behind AirTag in the Find My app. Below the switch is a section titled “Notify me except in,” which can be used to identify safe locations.

This feature offers suggested places, like your home address, to add to the list by simply tapping the plus icon, but you can also add custom locations. This is accomplished by tapping New Location and then searching for the address you want to use.

You also have the option of setting up a specific fence that marks the area within which notifications will be suppressed. You can adjust this by directly changing the blue circle or by tapping the “Small”, “Medium” or “Large” preset map at the bottom of the map.

When you’re done, tap Done. You may be asked if you want the location to trigger alerts only for that item or for all items that appear in the Find My option. Select “For all items and devices” or “For this item,” depending on whether it applies to all your items.

To remove a location, tap minus next to the place, then tap “Remove” to confirm.



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Naveen Kumar

Friendly communicator. Music maven. Explorer. Pop culture trailblazer. Social media practitioner.

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