It’s an all too common scenario. You rush around all day, juggling work, children, housekeeping and a little time for you. You have one, then two, twenty, a hundred things on your mind and somewhere – probably in between fetching the kids and getting dinner – your iPhone, the essential piece of tech that’s basically an extension of you, disappears somewhere without a trace.
Fortunately, Apple has this sort of thing covered. They have conveniently been offering the Find my iPhone feature for the last five years, allowing you to remotely find, lock, or wipe your iPhone using iCloud or another iOS device. Using Find my iPhone is simple, requiring little more than the initial setup and activation, and can really save you should you discover your precious device is nowhere to be found. The software works on other devices including your iPad, iPod Touch, and even your Mac. It won’t prevent you from losing your phone, but it may help you find it so long as you active the feature before losing your device.
Step 1: Check the requirements
- Find my iPhone is available on all devices equipped with iOS 5 or later
- You will also need a valid iCloud account
- Devices that don’t have network coverage must be connected to a registered Wi-Fi network to be located
Step 2: Download and install the app
Download the App from the App Store
Step 3: Activate Find my iPhone
Once installed, go to:
Settings > iCloud > Swipe to the bottom of the menu, select the Find my iPhone option and toggle the on-off switch to the right. Tap the Allow option in the resulting pop up.
You can Repeat the process using the same iCloud account information for any iOS device you wish to activate.
Step 4: Loose your iPhone
Just make sure to check the crevices of your couch one last time…
Step 5: Find your iPhone
Using another iOS device
Tap the Find my iPhone icon and enter your Apple ID login credentials in the appropriate fields. Once logged in, select the lost or stolen device from the list of devices setup with Find my iPhone to view the device’s location.
You can also wipe the phone remotely, lock it and force it to play a sound.
Using your iCloud account on the Web
Open your browser and navigate to the iCloud homepage before signing in with your Apple ID and password. Afterword, click the large Find My iPhone icon, click All Devices at the top of the window, and select the lost or stolen device from a the resulting list of activated devices.
I’ve used this feature a number of times and it is surprisingly accurate. We’ve had the local police tracking a guy who helped himself to my phone in Westlake and sent the children on regular “treasure” hunts around the house to find my phone. I have also used the feature to follow my son cycling home from a friend!
This is a seriously handy free App, if like me, you don’t loose things, you just don’t know where they are all the time.