Google blames Apple for the fact that there is still no real alternative to AirTags on Android

At Google I/O 2023, Google announced an update to the Search Network for Android devices. Android devices would soon be able to locate nearby devices via Bluetooth, and the network would also open up to third-party Bluetooth trackers (equivalent to Android AirTags).

The result would be that Android’s device search network would be just as comprehensive as Apple’s search network and, given Android’s global popularity, even larger.

But the announcement was made almost a year ago and we’re still at it. If you are wondering who is responsible for the delay, Google has a clear answer: Apple.

Google shared an update in July 2023 that the search network launch was delayed “Apple implements protective measures for iOS”. More specifically, Google worked with Apple to finalize the joint specification for Spam Tracker Alerts. “At the end of the year”.

However, time has passed and the Find My Device Android network update has not arrived yet. Now what is the cause? The answer remains the same: Apple.

The specification that Google and Apple are working on is called “Unwanted Location Tracking Detection”, which goes through a long and extensive process to become an Internet standard. Apple’s implementation of unwanted tracker alerts would be based on this specification, but it was unclear whether Apple was waiting for the specification to become an Internet standard. However, this will not happen until July 2025, when a standards document will be submitted.

The report notes that Google has made it clear what Apple was really waiting for “a production implementation of the unwanted trace warning specification” and not an actual final version of the specification. This production implementation was released in December 2023 and the “integration version” of the standard is available. Now Apple needs to implement unwanted tracker notifications on iOS.

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