Find my iPhone 5/10/12

Make looking for your iPod Touch, iPhone or iPad a little easier next time you misplace it.

This app is not 100% accurate, and it’s easy for someone to reset a stolen device. With that said up front, think of this as a helpful app for casual use. I first downloaded this app on a day I forgot my iPhone at home. What better way to test its accuracy since I knew where my phone was. I live in a rural area so the cell phone towers are further apart than in a city so my device was discovered but was off about four miles. I compared that with a search for my iPad, which was sitting next to me in Wooster. My device was discovered within 15 feet of its exact location. So, keep in mind your region when using this app.

You might be thinking, why bother if it’s not 100% accurate. A co-worker shared with me that his daughters misplace their iPod touches in the home. With the ‘Find my iPhone’ app he can Play Sound or Send Message, so the iPods will ‘chirp’ and the girls can listen for the sound to find their iPods. The sound chirps even if the sound is muted! I leave my phone around the house all the time. I typically use my husband’s phone to call my phone to locate it. Now I don’t have to and even if the ringer is muted the ‘Find my iPhone’ app will send an audible ‘chirp’.

The app is titled ‘Find my iPhone’ but it works on iPads and iPod Touches as well. Keep in mind, the devices must be turned on, and signed in to iCloud. I seldom turn off my iPad because it consumes so little battery while in sleep mode, so I leave it on all the time. If the device doesn’t have current wi-fi, it will ‘chirp’ once a wi-fi signal has been rediscovered.

This app works well when you take your device to school and can’t locate it, or if you have only one or two devices to a classroom. This app does not work for schools that have 30 devices on a cart. The reason for this is iCloud. The device must be signed in to iCloud. Typically this is your personal Apple ID and you are signed in so you can ‘backup’ your device to the cloud. This connection to the cloud is what enables the app to find your device. Schools often use one generic account for all devices on a cart and therefore are ‘clones’ of each other.

 

Want to learn how to set up ‘Find My iPhone’ on an iOS device go here: http://help.apple.com/icloud/#mmfc0f0c67

To use the browser version of Find my iPhone go here (from a MAC or PC) go here: https://www.icloud.com/

In addition to finding a device the ‘Find my iPhone’ app can lock and wibe devices remotely. Locking a device will prevent anyone from accessing your personal information stored on your device. You can set a passcode through the iCloud web portal if you don’t have a passcode already. If you already have a passcode you simply click ‘lock’ and the device is immediately locked. Just like when sending a Message or Play Sound it will ‘chirp’ if the device has wi-fi and will complete the process once the device re-joins a wi-fi connection if not connected.