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iOS 13 code reportedly hints at Apple's rumored Tile competitor

The tags would reportedly work with the new Find My app.

Apple WWDC 2019

IOS 13's code might have clues to a future gadget. 

James Martin/CNET
This story is part of WWDC 2021. All the latest coverage from Apple's annual developers conference.

WWDC's keynote presentation on Monday was packed full of news on iOS 13, iPadOS, MacOS Catalina and more. And now that the betas for all of Apple's new operating systems are available to developers, some surprises have started to surface. Developer Steve Moser tweeted about "Tag 1.1" Tuesday after digging into the iOS 13 beta code.

Moser wasn't the only one fiddling around under the hood; 9to5Mac corroborated the code.

The "tag" device would work similarly to Tile trackers, the small, square, battery-powered tiles that aim to help you find your lost keys, bags and other items. The tag tracker could be attached to any item -- your keys, purse or backpack for instance -- and then paired with your iCloud account by proximity to an iPhone or other Apple device. You'd reportedly get notifications when the device gets too far away from the tag, so you wouldn't lose things.

That, of course, is an expansion on the new Find My app, the hybrid of the apps formerly known as Find My iPhone and Find My Friends, that Apple announced at WWDC. But a dedicated hardware device would allow anything to be tracked, not just misplaced iPhones, iPads or AirPods. 

9to5Mac had previously reported on rumors of the tracking devices in April

Apple didn't immediately respond to a request for comment, but it's possible the company will reveal more information in September, when it's expected to unveil the iPhone 11 and other new 2019 hardware.

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