So, you’ve got a lost smartphone. We’ve all been there. It was just in your pocket a minute ago — and now it’s gone, lost to the phone fairies, forgotten in your other coat, or misplaced somewhere during your busy day.Whatever happened, it’s now gone and your indispensable electronic friend has been replaced by a feeling of rising panic and the inevitable question: ‘What do I do now?’
Thankfully, there are plenty of ways to get a hold of your missing phone. Both iPhone and Android smartphones come with helpful options for locating a missing phone, and for protecting your critical personal information if the device is truly lost. Of course, these features are only as good as your phone’s battery.
We also recommend caution when communicating with anyone who has found your smartphone. Avoid giving away personal information, such as home address, until you know you’re dealing with someone you can trust. Stick with sending phone numbers or email addresses to communicate how the good Samaritan can return your phone.
The best way to get your iPhone back is through Apple’s pre-installed custom iPhone locator app, Find My iPhone. Find My iPhone can display your missing device using a computer or tablet to help you locate and manage it. You can also mark it as lost, lock it, and wipe it remotely. However, Find My iPhone only works if the phone is turned on and connected to a cellular or Wi-Fi network.
You must make sure to activate this feature on your phone before it will work. To do this, make sure you’ve activated your iCloud account. After you’ve done so, go to the Settings menu on your iPhone, tap iCloud, and then tap Find My iPhone. Switch it to the “On” position, and you’re ready to go.
To use the feature, simply log into iCloud and open the Find my iPhone feature. The Apple service will locate your phone on a map and give you three recovery options, play a sound on your device, send a message to your phone with “lost mode,” or erase its contents. All of this can be done without any additional configurations.
Android offers Google’s own service for finding and managing your device remotely, Android Device Manager, which is built directly into your Android smartphone through Google Play Services. You must enable this feature by launching the Google Settings app, tapping Android Device Manager, and activating it.
The Device Manager app can be accessed using your Google account from another phone, tablet, or a PC or laptop. You can spot the location of your device on a map, and, as with iPhone, choose from three recovery options. If it’s near you, you can remotely ring the device to discover where it’s hiding. Or, you can select a “lock” option to alert anyone finding the device to call a displayed phone number where you can be reached. And if the phone simply can’t be retrieved, you can remotely erase its contents.
These wonderful tracking devices only work if they are turned on, the phone is powered on and has a cellular connection or access to a Wi-Fi network. Also, make sure to sync your device contacts using your Google or Apple ID often, and use a cloud storage option to save photos or important documents. This makes sure you have a complete backup of the most precious information on your phone.
If you would like help turning on these features on your device, visit your local Pioneer Retail Office today.