Citing the potential privacy concerns of Bluetooth-based location tracking devices such as Tile and AirTag, both Apple and Tile recently released a solution to curb this. Following this, Google is now developing a built-in tracker detection feature for Android. The feature will be baked into Android and would allow users to detect and locate unfamiliar trackers around them. Check out the details to find out more.
Android to Get a Built-in Bluetooth Tracker Detection Feature
According to a recent APK teardown by 9to5Google, strings of code have been spotted in its Play services platform with references to the Bluetooth-tracker detection feature. The latest version (v22.12.13) contains strings for “Unfamiliar device alerts” and “Unfamiliar Tag Detected Notification” that hint at the feature.
Moreover, there are strings mentioning “ATag,” “Finder tag,” and “Tile tag” that refer to Apple’s AirTags and Tile’s offerings, respectively. This suggests that the Android feature will be able to detect the tracking devices from Apple and Tile.
The report also states that Google started working on the tracker-detection feature for Android in mid-March. Hence, it is still in its early stages of development and has not been rolled out to any user. However, we expect the company to integrate the feature into its upcoming Android 13 update.
To recall, the market for Bluetooth-based trackers saw a massive jump after Apple launched its AirTags. However, Apple’s offering also brought various privacy issues for users like stealing and stalking. The company addressed this with its latest iOS 15.4 recently and released the “Tracker Detect” app for Android.
That said, a built-in tracker detection feature in Android would be a welcome change for users as Apple’s Tracker Detect app only works when it is opened by users. The app does not provide automatic detection and notification features, hence, the feature mostly goes unused.
So, a built-in tracker detection feature will eliminate the need for manually downloading an app and using it to detect nearby Bluetooth trackers. Instead, it would automatically detect and notify users about unknown tracking devices near them. What do you think about the new built-in tracker detection feature in Android? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.