How To Find Your Android Phone
Have you ever misplaced your Android phone? Ok who hasn’t?! Forgotten where you put it and had to have a loved one call the device to find it? What if you had it set to vibrate mode? Fear not, Android has you covered with the Android Device Manager.
Android Device Manager was developed to provide basic remote control features that are common in the enterprise space on enterprise grade phones, but had been missing in the consumer space. Among these are the ability to locate your phone, remotely lock it, and to wipe it. Depending on your vendor and the age of your phone it may come pre-installed, or you might have to do some groundwork to get you going.
In all cases you need to have a Google Account and be logged into your phone with it. You authenticate via this account to verify you have the rights to control your phone. Once you have logged in both on your computer and on your phone with your Google Account, it’s time to see if Device Manager is already installed on your phone by opening up your Apps drawer and browsing to Device Manager.
Install Device Manager
If you don’t see the icon, your phone may need to have Device Manager installed. The easiest way to do this is by going to Device Manager on the Google Play Store and clicking install. If you have multiple devices select the one you are installing to in the list and wait for your phone to acknowledge the installation.
Before you rely on the Device Manager you should verify some items. These apply to whether you did a new install or had Device Manager existing on your phone. First verify that Android Device Manager is turned on by opening your app menu and looking for the Google Settings app . Touch Security and find the section for Android Device Manager. Make sure settings allowing Remotely Locate this Device and Allow remote lock and factory reset are turned on.
Next you want to make sure Location is turned on; in the same Google Settings app, Select Location and verify the Location setting is turned on.
Using the Manager
Now you can check if everything is working by going to the Device Manager homepage on Google where you may be asked to log in. You will now see a map with a list of your phones.
Current Location – Shows you the last location your phone has reported.
Rename – Allows you to change the name of the device. You might want to put “Work Phone” for example.
Locate – Send a query to try and get the current location from the phone. If it’s connected to the Google network it will show you the approximate location.
Ring – This will ring the phone even if the ringer is set to silent for five minutes. Hitting the power button will stop the ringing.
Lock – This allows you to lock the phone and has you set a new password. Convenient if you don’t want someone picking up your phone and reading items on it.
Erase – Does a factory reset on the phone and will attempt to wipe the SD card. Wiping the SD card is not always possible.
Tip: Running the Device Manager application on your phone gives you the same abilities as the webpage. This is useful if you have multiple devices.
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