I’ve often felt like Apple‘s multiple product departments work separately, with a minimal informational exchange. How else would you explain the fact that in the same event, Apple announces the AirTags that expand on the company’s massive FindMy network, and also announces a new Apple TV with a redesigned remote… that can’t be tracked.
A major problem with the Apple TV remote up until now was (apart from its stunningly bad UX) that it was a ridiculously thin gadget that often got lost by slipping in between cushions or just sitting somewhere inside a magazine. The sleekness of the Apple TV remote wasn’t a feature, it was a flaw, and people were constantly complaining about losing their remote and never being able to find it… so when Apple redesigned their remote, many were expecting the 2 trillion-dollar company to address this problem too. However, all Apple managed to do was redesign the remote’s controls by bringing an iPod-style jog-dial on it.
For the thousands of people who don’t see themselves buying a new remote just so that they can face the same old problems, Etsy-maker PrintSpired Designs has a neat workaround – a 3D printed case that not only gives the old Apple TV remote some volume and thickness but also allows you to slip an AirTag in so you can track your remote when it inevitably gets misplaced.
It’s worth noting that even with the case on, the remote isn’t that thick. The case measures 14mm in height, which is about as thick as 2 iPhones stacked together. The printed case doesn’t weigh much either (given that it’s printed with support structures which basically makes it hollow on the inside), so it’s still comfortable to use. The case makes enough space for one AirTag to fit right into its design, and when the remote sits in place, it still lets you access its charging port.
The remote-case itself is available on PrintSpiredDesigns’ Etsy store for $12.99. However, if you’ve got access to a 3D Printer, you can download the STL file for $1.99 and print your own. I’d prefer buying the case though because they come in color options, including even one printed from glow-in-the-dark filament!!