You may need to search for nearby Android devices, if you have lost it, had it stolen or something similar, and you will be able to do this if you have previously configured your device,
If you think about everything that’s on our phones these days: credit card and banking information, family photos, business information and more, so it’s highly advisable to set up my device for this.
Fortunately, big companies like Google and Samsung have built-in features that allow you to locate your phone, ping it, and even wipe its data if necessary.
I’ll show you how to use both Google’s service to find and control your devices, even when you don’t have them.
The first thing is to set up or have Find My Device configured and you have the whole process in the following link..
After this and to find your device we leave you below all the possible ways to find it, although Google’s as always is one of the best and free.
Table of Contents
- 1 How to Search and Find your lost mobile with Google
- 2 Search for nearby devices with Google Maps.
- 3 To search and find your lost Android phone you can use Google Photos.
- 4 How to use Dropbox to find your stolen or lost phone.
- 5 Find your phone with your smart speaker at home.
- 6 Find your phone with a Bluetooth tracker.
- 7 If you have a Samsung phone, you can use this option.
- 8 Installing Non-Google Apps to Search for Your Device
- 9 Frequently Asked Questions
- 9.1 Can I find my phone with my IMEI number?
- 9.2 Can I trace my lost phone if someone did a factory reset?
- 9.3 Can I find my lost phone if it is turned off / in airplane mode / battery is dead?
- 9.4 I changed my Google account password, can I still locate my Android phone?
- 9.5 Can I locate my device if someone has changed the SIM card?
- 9.6 My phone doesn’t show up in Find My Device. Why?
- 9.7 Things you should do as soon as possible if you find your device or end up getting a new one
How to Search and Find your lost mobile with Google
Google among its features has Find My Phone – Find My Phone, using it is a very simple way to track or detect nearby devices, such as your phone, whether you have left it in a bar or simply lost it behind the couch cushions.
You can see how to set up find my device, with which you can do my device settings and to search and find your device whether it is a mobile, tablet or similar you need to do the following.1. Type «find my phone» in the Google browser.
Assuming your phone has location services enabled (maybe) and is synced with a Google account (almost definitely), Google can track your phone directly.
If you have multiple phones with the same Google account, choose the one that is lost or stolen.
2. Your Google account (default that you can change) appears if you are doing it from a mobile that has the same account.
If not, enter your Google username and password for security purposes. You will also need to confirm your contact information if Google finds anything suspicious.
Another option is to log in with other forms as you can see in the image.3. Call or locate your phone.
The first step is to ring your phone or locate it by GPS. Simply click on any of the options to take effect.
If you select Ring, it will make the phone start ringing at full volume for 5 minutes.
If you have not been able to locate it you have to continue with the following steps if you consider it appropriate to do a search for nearby devices.4. Lock your phone.
If your phone is not locked by default, your next option is to lock it remotely.
Here, you can set a password for the lock screen and add a message to someone who can find it.
By default, the message is «This phone has been lost. Please help me return it.» Users can also attach a number to call.
5. Try calling your phone.
Google recommends that you try calling your phone from another phone or through Hangouts. The Find My Phone page provides links to your stored contacts and hangouts page.
6. Log out of your phone’s gmail session.
If you are convinced that your phone is gone and you don’t want anyone else to take advantage of your Google credentials, you can remotely sign out. Just press the «Sign out» button.
7. Contact your provider.
Google recommends that you contact your mobile service provider to perform a search for available devices, below. To do this, visit your provider’s website; Google does not provide a link.8. Erase your device.
If all else fails and you are sure your phone is not coming back, you can take the nuclear option and remotely wipe it. This will wipe the system and at least prevent a thief from stealing your data.
However, this option will prevent you from using the Locate, Ring and Lock functions, so use them only as a last resort.9. Try lost and found.
You can use your location to discover the nearest public lost and found. It’s not a great bet, especially if you live in a big city, but it’s better than nothing. Just click on the link.
Find your mobile in the fastest way.
With the method above you can configure how to find your mobile, find it and various options as you have seen.
But if you want to locate it right away (if it’s on, of course), this method is faster and easier.
Paso 1 You must also put in the browser find my device and click on this link.
Paso 2 And that’s it, there you have the location of your mobile.
You will be able to see if it is connected or its last connection, the name of your phone, battery and most importantly the very approximate address of where it is.
If you click on the green square that has a mobile drawn, it will direct you to Google Maps and it will tell you the address.
Search for nearby devices with Google Maps.
Your device has or has had Internet access (before being turned off), then you will be able to search for nearby devices.
You need to enable location reporting and location history on the device (can be done in the Google Settings app on the device).
Unlike the Find Your Device tool, the Google Maps timeline feature is not focused on finding a lost phone.
You can use location data for many different things, such as looking up routes from previous trips. However, it’s also a good way to locate your lost phone.
As mentioned, if your Android device is turned off, you can use location history data to identify the last recorded location.
This means that even if your phone’s battery runs out, you may still be able to find it.
Here’s what you need to do.
- Go to Timeline (formerly Google Maps Location History) and make sure the current day is selected in the calendar. In the left sidebar, you can see a complete timeline of that day including the names of all recorded locations. On the right, you can see all locations displayed on a map.
In addition to Find My Device, which also uses GPS for tracking, Your Timeline only uses mobile tower IDs and Wi-Fi location detection to collect location data.
This means that accuracy can vary significantly.
The advantage of Timeline is the ability to track your phone’s location frequently over a period of time.
So even if someone were to steal it, you could identify the most visited locations, which could be the thief’s home or workplace. That could help you and the authorities catch the person.
To search and find your lost Android phone you can use Google Photos.
In case your device is stolen, you may be able to find it thanks to the Google Photos backup and sync feature.
If you have enabled this option in the app, all images taken with the phone will be uploaded to your Google Photos account. Why is this good news? Well, not only the image is uploaded, but also the place where it was taken.
So, in case the thief hasn’t logged out of your Google account and tested your phone’s camera, some new images may appear in Google Photos.
Obviously, this only works if the lost phone has an active internet connection and if you have given the Photos app permission to use your location.
Please be careful in case you can identify the location of your lost Android phone, which could well be the address of the thief.
Do not try to find it yourself! Use that information and call the Local police or competent authority to take it from there.
- Your device must have Internet access.
- Have the «Backup and sync» option enabled in Google Photos.
- Someone has to take photos with your lost device.
Assuming all those requirements are met, what do you need to do? Here it is, step by step:
- Visit photos.google.com and sign in with the Google account your Android device is on.
- Check to see if any photos were taken after your device was stolen.
- If so, click on the image.
- Now, click on the information icon in the upper right corner.
- In the sidebar that appears you can now see the image information, including the location where it was taken.
If Dropbox is installed and configured correctly, any photos the thief takes will be
How to use Dropbox to find your stolen or lost phone.
automatically uploaded to your Dropbox account so you can view them.
This way, you can get photographic evidence of the thief and maybe even decipher the location.
Of course, someone who has stolen your phone will probably erase everything you have installed.
But, if you’re using an Android device, you can install a hidden .zip version of Dropbox in the background of the device, which would go unnoticed by most common thieves.
You can also do this on a non-rooted device by unlocking the bootloader and showing Dropbox at the system level, giving it root access.
But, if a thief really knew what they were doing, they could simply boot into recovery mode, format /system, and flash a new ROM on the device.
Or, they could hack your Dropbox account to uninstall it through the website. Is this Dropbox hacking the most efficient anti-theft method? Of course it isn’t.
Especially if you have an iPhone (like me). But, if combined with some of the other apps and methods available, this can only increase your chances of getting your phone back.
Find your phone with your smart speaker at home.
If you’ve lost your phone and you know it’s somewhere in your home, the smart speaker could help you.
Make sure your device and smart speaker are connected to the same account and it will help you find your phone in no time.
If you have a Google Home, you can say something like, «Okay Google, find my phone.
Your smart speaker will confirm the device you’re asking about and make it ring.The best part? Even if the phone is on silent or vibrating, it will still make the noise.
Find your phone with a Bluetooth tracker.
Do you often forget where you’ve placed your phone? Don’t worry, you’re not alone.
For an extra layer of backup, invest in Bluetooth trackers. There are several currently available, such as the Tile.
All you have to do is pair your phone with the tracker so that when your phone is temporarily lost behind a couch cushion, the tracker sets off an alarm on your phone to help you find it faster.
If you have a Samsung phone, you can use this option.
I highly recommend that you make sure you have enabled the «Find My Phone» option on your Galaxy phone so that in case you lose your device, you can quickly locate it. Here’s how to make sure you’re covered.
Search your device for the Find My Mobile app (it’s there, but it won’t show up in the app drawer).
Tap on Find My Mobile.
- Make sure you allow the app to access your contacts, location and device storage.
- Open the main Settings menu.
- Scroll down and tap Biometrics and security.
- Make sure the Find my phone toggle is enabled.
- Tap on the Find my mobile link.
- Make sure your account is correct on this screen and enable Remote unlock and Send last location.
- When you enable the remote unlock feature, a pop-up window will ask if you want to back up your PIN. Touch OK.
- From this last screen, you can open Find My Mobile in your phone’s browser, but if you lose your phone, it won’t be much help. Next, we’ll look at how to locate your device from another device or from your computer’s browser.
How to use Samsung Find My Mobile on the Web to locate your Galaxy Phone
- Type findmymobile.samsung.com in your computer’s web browser.
- Log in to your account. Here you should see a list of your Samsung devices, which you can click on to see their current whereabouts.
- If your device is lost or missing, you can click on various actions on the right side of the page (Ring, Lock, Track location, Erase data, Back up, Retrieve calls/messages, Unlock, Extend battery life or Set guardians).
- Click the settings link in the left navigation to download or delete personal data.
- Click the three-dot menu to the right of your device name to edit the device nickname or remove it from your account.
- Don’t forget to bookmark findmymobile.samsung.com and be sure to use a strong, unique and secure password. The last thing you want if your device is missing is for someone else to be able to access this portal.
How to use Google’s «Find My Device» feature on the web to locate your Galaxy Phone
In addition to Samsung’s Find My Phone service, you can also take advantage of Google’s Find My Device service, if you prefer. Here’s how.
Type myaccount.google.com in your computer’s web browser.
- Click the security link in the left navigation.
- Scroll down to the Your devices section.
- Click the Find a missing device link.
- Find your missing device and click on it.
- Click Override or Locate to find your device.
- Click the next step, or scroll down and choose from the other security options. You can check recent security events for suspicious activity, lock the phone, attempt to call the phone, log out of the phone, contact your carrier, or consider wiping the device.
- The nice thing about Google’s service is that you can manage multiple devices from different manufacturers in one place. The downside is that you may not be able to regain as much control over devices from some manufacturers (such as Apple products, for example).
Installing Non-Google Apps to Search for Your Device
While Google’s own tools are probably the best options, there are some third-party tools that we recommend. They typically offer more remote control features and can add an extra layer of security.
Cerberus (free with in-app purchases)
Cerberus is our most recommended tracking app, which has a great selection of remote control options.
This includes basic location tracking, secret audio or video recording, remote picture taking, triggering an alarm, and wiping data.
In case you have a rooted Android device, you can use a flash ZIP file to install it on your phone.
This way, even if someone else resets your lost Android phone to factory settings, Cerberus will still be installed on your device. For more information on that, see our article on Cerberus.
There are many more options that make Cerberus the Swiss Army Knife or tracking apps. What makes this app even better are some of the more advanced features.
For example, you can hide the Cerberus app in the app drawer, which makes it harder to locate and delete.
Lost Android – Lost Android (Free with in-app purchases)
Lost Android is quite similar to Cerberus and offers a bunch of different remote control options, including tracking your lost phone, wiping your data, and taking pictures remotely.
Don’t judge the rather basic look of the Lost Android website that functions as the interface from which you can locate and control your device.
It does its job well and even the app developer claims on the site that he is an engineer and not a web developer.
Installation is fairly easy. After installing the app through the Play Store, open it and give it device administrator permissions. Done.
If you lose your phone, visit the Lost Android website, sign in with the same Google account you have on your phone, and choose one of the available tracking features.
In addition to Find Nearby Lost Devices and find them you may be interested in:
Frequently Asked Questions
With the large number of questions people posted in the comments section, we thought it made sense to address the most asked ones about how to set up my device so I can find it if it gets stolen or lost.
The answers below may also bring some people back to reality, because in some cases it is not possible to locate a lost phone.
This way, this guide is much clearer and you can focus on finding your phone instead of posting your question or searching the comments for the answer you are looking for.
Can I find my phone with my IMEI number?
Locating your lost Android phone with its unique IMEI number is not really possible.
In some cases, the police can work together with a phone’s carrier to locate it using its IMEI number.
But don’t think you can just walk into a police station and expect them to do it.
What you can do is block your phone so that no one can use it to make calls, send text messages or use the web. To do this, it is best to contact your provider.
By the way, you can find out the IMEI number of your phone by dialing *#06#. This code should work on most phones.
Can I trace my lost phone if someone did a factory reset?
No. As the name implies, resetting a phone restores it to factory settings.
The most important thing you need, the connection to your Google account, will no longer be there.
If you have not installed a tracking app with root access, such as Cerberus, you will no longer be able to locate it.
Can I find my lost phone if it is turned off / in airplane mode / battery is dead?
This is a common scenario. Your phone is lost and its battery won’t last forever or a would-be thief could have turned it off.
Now what? Except you work for the FBI, there is no way to get in contact with your device.
You need to have an active Internet connection to send your approximate location.
However, you can use your phone’s location history to see where it was before its Internet connection stopped.
For this to work, the location history must be enabled on your phone.
If you didn’t, you have no choice but to wait and hope someone turns it on and connects to the web.
I changed my Google account password, can I still locate my Android phone?
You can change your password without losing the ability to track your device. Methods such as Android Device Manager will continue to work.
Changing your Google password after losing your phone makes total sense, right?
You don’t want someone else to have access to all your emails, drive documents, etc.
Can I locate my device if someone has changed the SIM card?
Yes, all you need in this case is for the phone to maintain an internet connection.
Changing the SIM card does not disconnect it from your Google account, which is a good thing.
It means that tracking tools, such as Android Device Manager or Android Lost, should still work.
My phone doesn’t show up in Find My Device. Why?
Your phone could be turned off, disconnected from the Internet or your Google account, this can have many reasons. . Please note that if you change your Google account password, you will be automatically disconnected from Google.
Also, trying to locate a device with the Find My Device feature does not always work. You may keep trying to locate your lost phone every half hour or so.
It is possible that the phone has a bad connection or someone turned it on and connected to the Web. But if you’ve changed your Google password, then Find My Device won’t be able to track it.
Still have unanswered questions, you’re more than welcome to post your question in the comments!
Things you should do as soon as possible if you find your device or end up getting a new one
We received a lot of emails, tweets and comments over the past few months from people who found their lost phone thanks to this article. Unfortunately, most readers are not so lucky.
Either way, if you found your lost phone or plan to buy a replacement, you should be well prepared before something like this happens again.
Here are two key steps you should take to quickly locate your device in case you lose it again.
Set a screen lock pattern, password, fingerprint or facial recognition.
Many people already use lock screens to prevent unwanted people from accessing private files such as images, texts or videos.
For some people, unlocking a phone countless times a day can be quite a hassle, but it’s worth it.
This extra layer of security not only prevents your friends and colleagues from secretly checking your latest images or texts.
It also prevents thieves from changing any important settings, such as turning off mobile data or disconnecting your phone from your Google account.
As you have learned, getting the current location of your Android phone requires both a functional web connection and a connected Google account.
Have you been able to recover your mobile device after losing it? How did you get it back? Share your experience with us in the comments.
Enable Find My Device and Location History
Make sure that both Find My Device and Location History are enabled.
Both tools can be of great help when you lose your device. With Find My Device you can track your device, make it ring and erase its data.
Location history shows you the last recorded locations on a map. If someone has stolen it, this could help you (and the local authorities) track down the address of the thief, for example.
To activate both services, select «Google Settings» in the app drawer.
Select «Security» and make sure the two options under «Find my device» are enabled. Now, go back one step and select «Location».
Click «Google Location History» and turn it on. You can now use the tool to track your device and Location History to view your last recorded locations.