Apple is reportedly testing a new application that combines Find My iPhone and Find My Friends into one single service, in addition to developing an all-new Tile-like physical item tracker to be clipped to items such as car keys and wallets, and then tracked via the interconnected tracking app.
According to 9to5Mac‘s Guilherme Rambo who cites sources familiar with ongoing testing of project “GreenTorch”, the codename given to the revamped all-in-one Find My iPhone and Find My Friends app, the service will offer all the abilities currently available as part of both services, including location sharing and location-based notifications as well as Lost Mode and the ability to remotely wipe data from a device.
Rambo claims the service will add a “find network” feature that allows Apple devices to be tracked even when they are not connected to a Wi-Fi or cellular network.
The new unified Find My Friends and Find My iPhone app is said to be coming to iOS and macOS as part of Apple’s “Marzipan” cross-platform initiative, and will presumably be announced at WWDC in June alongside iOS 13.
Apple’s so-called Tile-like tracking “tag” is said to still be in development and won’t arrive until later in the year, most likely in September when the company unveils the iPhone XI. The small tag will reportedly be pared with a users iCloud account and provide push notifications when separated from its pared iPhone.
Users will supposedly be able to store their contact information in the tag, which can be read by any Apple device when the tag is put into “lost mode” – the owner of the tag will receive a notification when it is found. It seems that Apple wants to leverage the vast amount of active Apple devices to create a crowdsourced network that helps its users find any lost item, by using this new hardware product, notes 9to5Mac.
A name for the tracking product wasn’t shared, but is supposedly called “B389” by the people involved in its development.