Apple’s AirTag Woes Hit Life360’s Tracking Plans
Life360’s $300 million purchase of tracking device Tile in November was seen by many as a huge bet, especially considering Apple had launched its similar AirTag product in May. Stock fell 63 per cent after the deal was announced.
But it seems that it isn’t the might of Apple’s competitive empire that investors should have been worried about, but the terrible way in which their product has been souring consumers on the idea of small, trackable devices, and the nefarious ways in which they can be used.
Sports Illustrated model Brooks Nader received an iPhone alert while walking home from a bar, only to discover an AirTag which had been slipped into her jacket pocket. This was only the most high-profile case of the AirTag being used for criminal means, including a spat of car thefts using the devices.
Despite Apple hurriedly announcing new safety measures, the stink remains.
Life360’s CEO Chris Hull admitted to investors on an earnings call that the controversy is hurting the company.
“We’re watching the privacy concerns relating to Apple AirTags and stalking risks,” Hull told investors.
“The scrutiny Apple is facing in the press is moderating growth of the category overall.”
After the call, Life360 stock fell 46 per cent.
“This may be a headwind for standalone hardware sales until the situation resolves and the category is able to more fully emerge.”