There is an easy way, but it will only work if you have set up the ‘Find My iPhone’ feature before you lose it, so if you haven’t lost your iPhone yet, go ahead and set it up. Go to the Apple iCloud site and log in. Click on ‘Find My iPhone’ and a map will load up with your iPhone location indicated with a green dot. In the case of multiple iDevices sharing the same iCloud account, you will need to select the one you want to find. An additional feature available with iOS8 is to retain the last location of your iPhone if the battery has dies. To turn that on, click on ‘Send Last Location’ too.
If you didn’t set up ‘Find My iPhone’ then all you can do is a physical search – try ringing your own iPhone and assuming it’s not on silent you may be able to hear it in your other jacket, the next room, down the side of the couch, in the washing basket or in the dog’s bed – whichever location your iPhone has managed to hide away in. Or take the hit and buy yourself a new one, not forgetting to set up ‘Find My iPhone’ straight away.
OK, so let’s look at using ‘Find My iPhone’ – go to the iCloud site and ‘Find My iPhone’ – wait a short while for the GPS in the iPhone to find itself, and if the phone battery is still holding some charge (you can monitor battery life through the same feature) you will see the location on the map.
If your iPhone battery is completely dead, only the last location before the battery died will be available, so if it is indicated that there is no charge in the iPhone’s battery, and you have iOS 8, and you have remembered to turn on the feature, you will see where the iPhone was just before the power gave out.
The position on the map may not betotally precise, but it should be near enough to jog your memory of where you last saw your iPhone if you’ve simply left it somewhere, and via the iCloud you can even get your phone to make a loud irritating noise so you can follow your ears, and this will even work if it’s in silent mode.
If you fear someone else may have got hold of your iPhone – either a Samaritan who has picked it up with the best of motives, or a thief who has all the wrong motives, you can activate the ‘Lost Mode’. This can lock the iPhone so it needs a 4 digit PIN to use it (don’t choose 1234 or 0000 or anything easily guessable like that), and can even put a message across the screen giving contact information. It also disables all payment methods in case you are set up on Apple Pay – you don’t want to give a thief a nice little spending spree do you?
If you really believe you’ve had your iPhone stolen, you can always resort to wiping out all the data contained therein from wherever you are, so even if a thief has your valuable handset, at least they don’t have your valuable data.
As we said before, these functions are only available if you enable them, so do it now, before it’s too late.