Using Find My Phone Feature
There’s nothing more annoying than when you misplace your phone and can’t seem to find it no matter how hard you search. Sure, if you have a friend or extra device, you can call your phone and search by listening for the ring. However, many smartphone owners keep their phones silenced, so how exactly do you find your phone?
That’s where the Find My Phone feature comes in. It can help you locate your device, even when it’s been silenced. Both Apple and Android smartphones have this feature, but locating a misplaced device isn’t the only thing this feature can do for you.
Although this particular feature won’t help you improve your phone photography skills, it will help you keep track of your expensive devices.
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Table of Contents
Why Use Find My Phone Feature
The Find My Phone feature is a versatile tool that you can use any time you misplace your phone. No matter where you lose your device, Find My Phone has a feature that can help.
Finding a Lost Phone
The most obvious benefit of this powerful feature is the ability to find your lost phone. Both Apple and Android devices allow you to view a map that you can use to find your missing phone using its current or last known location.
For Androids, if your phone has died or is no longer connected to a network, you may not be able to see its current location. In this case, you should still be able to see where the phone was when it was last working and connected to a network.
The Find My Phone app on Apple devices will still function even if the phone isn’t connected to the internet. The app uses nearby devices to send the location to iCloud, where it’s made available to you on the map. The information sent from other devices is anonymous and encrypted, so you don’t need to worry about strangers accessing your private information.
It’s worth noting that the maps aren’t completely accurate, and the location marked on the map is approximate at best. However, if you’re certain that you’ve either left your phone somewhere at home or you set it down somewhere while out shopping, the map can tell you that much.
When you’re in the same approximate area as your lost device, you’ll also be able to play a sound on it that will help you track it down. Your phone will typically ring at full volume for a number of minutes to ensure you have plenty of time to find it. This feature works even if your phone was silenced when you lost it.
Locking A Lost Phone
If you did accidentally leave your phone somewhere potentially unsafe, such as a public space, the Find My Phone feature also allows you to lock your device. Even if you don’t normally have to unlock your phone using a PIN, password, or pattern, you can set one up.
By activating this feature, you will also be able to help any good Samaritan that picks up your phone return it to you by adding a message or phone number to the lock screen. This allows anyone that picks the phone up to recognize that it’s been lost and return it to you as quickly as possible.
For Apple devices, this feature requires you to use your Apple ID to gain access to your phone, instead of your usual face ID, fingerprint, or passcode. For Android devices, you’ll need to use your normal PIN, pattern, or password to unlock the phone.
Erasing a Lost Phone
Although everyone hopes their lost phone is found by someone with good intentions, it’s also possible that your phone may fall into the wrong hands. If this happens, it’s crucial to keep your personal information and data safe and secure.
To ensure that your phone is the only thing stolen from you, the Find My Phone feature also allows you to erase the information on your phone.
On Android devices, the Find My Device feature lets you permanently delete all of the data on your phone, but it’s important to mention that it may not delete the information contained on SD cards.
It’s important to use this aspect of the Find My Device feature carefully. After it has erased the information on your phone, the feature will no longer work to track the location of the device. If you happen to find the phone after erasing, you’ll need your Google password to gain access again.
For Apple devices, the data erasing aspect of Find My Phone simply returns the device to factory settings. Again, this means you’ll no longer be able to track the device, so you need to be certain this is the right action to take. If you do find your iPhone after erasing, you’ll need to set it up with your iCloud account just like when you first bought it.
Find My Phone on Apple
The Find My Phone feature on Apple is unique in that it also allows you to share your current location with friends and family. This allows you to coordinate plans and make sure your loved ones have gotten home safely.
The Find My Phone app allows you to share your location with certain contacts for as little as an hour or as long as indefinitely. So whether you’re making sure a friend arrived at their destination or are making sure your loved ones know where you’re at, the app will make sure you stay connected.
The feature also allows you to set up notifications so when your friends and family members leave or arrive at a certain location, you know they made it to their destination safely. When notifications are activated, the person you’re tracking is notified, just so neither party’s privacy is violated.
The Find My Phone feature is also accessible with other Apple devices such as iPads, MacBooks, and Apple Watches. If you use other Apple devices, you’ll be able to quickly and easily locate your lost device or access the other features of the app. Learn all about the newest iPhone models here.
Find My Phone on Android
Unfortunately, Androids don’t let you stay in touch with friends and family the same way that Apple devices do, but there are still some unique features that are worth knowing about.
Mainly, the Find My Phone feature is compatible with Google Home speakers and Google smartwatches. The only downside to using these devices to find your phone is that if your phone is far away, they’re not going to be particularly helpful.
Google smartwatches will only help you locate your phone if it’s connected to your watch by Bluetooth. Google Home will only be able to help if your phone is connected to mobile data or Wi-Fi.