You reach for your phone, only to discover that it isn’t where you left it. You pat your pockets with a sinking feeling before tearing your room apart.
However, the reality sets in your favorite device are missing, and you have no idea where it went.
We rely on our cellphones for everything these days, from checking bank balances to creating flawless social media posts, so losing one may be a major inconvenience.
We’re not just talking about missing Facebook updates here. If you don’t have your pocket computer,
You lose contact with family and friends (who remembers phone numbers these days? ), you risk missing work commitments, and your travel plans are thrown into disarray.
To put it another way, you need to find your phone as soon as possible.
The good news is that you can use applications on your phone to assist you. The bad news is that these apps must be installed ahead of time.
There are a few things to keep in mind before we get started. If you’re reading this because your phone is lost, you’ve come to the right place.
We can’t help you if you haven’t already set up a recovery app (other than offering the usual advice: look in the last place you remember seeing it and ask one of your friends to call the number).
Furthermore, if your phone has been stolen, we do not advise you to trace it down on your own.
Contact your local law enforcement department and send over whatever information your phone-locating app provides for your protection.
rather than attempting to solve the problem on your own. Let’s get this party started.
WHERE CAN I FIND MY LOST PHONE?
Apple’s iOS operating system has a phone-locating feature. The app “Find My,”
Because your Apple ID is used to hunt down a lost iPhone, iPad, or other Apple device, make sure you memorize your password or store it in a trusted password manager.
To enable this option, go to Settings on your iPhone, tap your name at the top of the screen, and then enable Location Services.
Then select the menu option that shows your iPhone as one of the Apple ID-connected devices.
Toggle on Find My iPhone, then make sure the toggle switch next to Send Last Location is turned on as well.
You’ll also need to make sure that your phone’s Location Services are turned on to recover a misplaced phone.
This should be turned on by default, but you can double-check by going to Settings and pressing Privacy, then Location Services.
After you’ve enabled these options, you can go about your routine… until your iPhone escapes your control.
So, what should you do if your iPhone mysteriously disappears? To get started, open any computer’s web browser and go to icloud.com/find, then log in using your Apple ID.
Alternatively, take another Apple device, such as a laptop or iPad, sign in with your Apple ID, and download the Find My app for that device.
The following screen should display a map with a dot indicating the position of your iPhone and any other registered devices.
When you tap the dot, you’ll see the battery level of the phone, as well as the date and time the iPhone last reported its location.
If you haven’t checked in in a while, the battery may have died or someone may have turned it off.
Because a phone can’t communicate its location when it’s turned off, the location on the map may be outdated in this scenario.
Find I allow you to engage with your phone in addition to checking in with it.
If the map indicates that your phone is buried someplace in your flat, for example, you can press Play Sound to hear it ring (even if the volume is muted).
If the phone appears to be floating around somewhere else, you can mark it as lost and take more drastic measures.
This will lock your device remotely and display a message of your choice to any strangers who may pick it up on the street or in a restaurant.
It will also block any Apple Pay purchases from being made on the phone.
This mode should be sufficient to prevent a thief from gaining access.
However, if your phone has traveled to a region you’ve never visited before and you’re concerned that your data will be compromised, you can use the Erase This Device option as a last resort.
This will wipe your phone’s contents from afar. So even if your phone never finds its way back to you, you’ll be safe in the knowledge that your data is safe.
If you do manage to get your hands on it again, you can restore it using an iTunes or iCloud backup.
WHERE CAN I FIND MY LOST ANDROID PHONE?
The Find My iPhone feature is available on Android handsets as well. On a vanilla Android device,
You can find it by going to Settings, Google, and then Find My Device.
To turn it on, flick the switch at the top of your screen. If you activate this, you’ll be able to track down and, if required, wipe your Android device remotely if it goes missing.
Some Android device manufacturers include their phone-finding apps.
Samsung, for example, offers a service called Find My Mobile. However, as long as you’ve set up a Google account on your phone (and don’t forget or lose your password), you’re good to go.
The native choice should be available to you. You must enable location services on your Android device, just as you must on an iPhone.
To find out, click Settings > Location.
If you misplace your Android, your strategy should be similar to that of a misplaced iPhone.
To begin, open any web browser and go to google.com/android/find, or open the Find My Smartphone app on another Android device.
When you log into your Google account, you’ll see a map that shows you where your phone last recorded its location.
Here’s something else to think about: Go to Google’s main page and type “where did my phone go?” into the search box.
This will launch the same phone-showing map as long as you’re logged into your Google account.
This page provides you with other options in addition to disclosing the location of your Android device.
For one thing, even if the phone is set to quiet, you can get it to ring, which can help you figure out which sofa cushion it’s fallen beneath.
The ringing will last five minutes, giving you plenty of time to sort through the filthy laundry or rummage under the bed.
Keep in mind that the location on the map represents the location of the phone when it was last connected to the internet.
So, if your phone’s battery died in your apartment before it was transported, you won’t be able to detect it nearby, even though the map claims it’s right next to you.
The other option is under the Recover button, which brings you directly to the Find My Device screen.
where you may remotely lock and wipe your phone—the same features as the similar Apple service.
Sign out of your Google account on the missing device and lock it using the Secure device option.
If you think someone might pick up your phone and return it to you, you can set a message to appear on the lock screen.
Unless we’re talking about someone with high-level hacking skills, no one can access your data as long as it’s locked.
Finally, if your phone has been stolen and you want to make sure the data and apps on it are safe, you can choose the Erase device option.
It’s typically enough to remotely lock your phone to keep strangers out, but if you’re never going to get it again,
This is the safest option if you suspect someone has gotten past the lock screen.
Keep in mind that unless you’ve backed up your data somewhere else, you’ll lose your data forever.
OTHER SEARCHES FOR PHONE NUMBERS
Because both Apple and Google have made their tools so comprehensive (tools that can also track your other devices, such as Android Wear smartwatches and Apple Watches),
Third-party developers have been slow to respond with their apps in this area.
They do, however, present a few options that we enjoy.
Cerberus, an Android anti-theft app, gives a week of free use before charging a yearly subscription price of 5 euros.
which equals approximately $6. Cerberus allows you to capture images with your phone’s camera and screenshots of its screen in addition to tracking it on a map and activating its speakers.
This may assist you in determining where your phone is and who has it. The app can also display a message for whoever picks up your phone permanently.
Prey Anti-Theft provides comparable features as Cerberus, however, it is available for Android and iOS devices.
You can view your registered phones on a map, take screenshots and photos, and display a message on the screen once more.
Both apps may also set a very loud alarm. For up to three devices, Prey Anti-Theft is free.
Extra control zones, which means you’ll get warnings if your phone leaves a specific area, and other remote wipe choices are available for $5 per month.
For $15 a month, you get unlimited control zones and 10 devices to track.
Finally, go to your timeline page if you use Google Maps on your iPhone or Android.
Even if the main phone-tracking app wasn’t turned on, Google Maps may have registered your phone’s last location.
The Author is David Nield