Top 5 ways to locate a lost or misplaced smartphone


When you lose or misplace your phone, you panic. You put your hands over your pockets trying to feel it, but it is nowhere.

This is when you start sweating. Luckily, there are plenty of simple ways to locate your phone and the good news is you do not have to be technology literate to take advantage of them. Whether it is hiding between the cushions on the sofa or you left it behind in a restaurant, here are the best ways to find it.

Find My Device – Android Only

This is Google’s optimal way to find your phone. You only need a browser and Internet. Google “find my device” or simply login to Google and check the link to find your device. Either way, you will have to be logged in to Google for confirmation.

Once in, the next screen will show you a map and the location of your phone. It will give you some hints about its place – it could be in the car or in your garage or maybe you left it at work. If the location on the map coincides with yours, the phone is around the house. You have three options:

  • Play Sound – it will play a loud sound even if your phone is on silent mode.
  • Erase – it will clear all the information off your phone if it was stolen.
  • Lock – it will lock the phone and even display a message on the screen in case someone finds it.

Find My Phone – iOS Only

Find My Phone is an application preloaded on Apple’s mobile devices. The application must be turned on as soon as you get an Apple device or it will not work.

Assuming that you cannot find the phone, you will need a browser and Internet access – another mobile device or your computer. Login to and one of the links will take you to Find My Phone.

Just like for Google’s proprietary app, you will be able to ring the device (even in silent mode) or erase all the data on it. You will also be able to see other mobile devices associated with this account. If you have the Family Sharing option on, you can take a look at your loved ones’ location too – great for your peace of mind.

Find My Mobile – Samsung Only

This option is Samsung’s proprietary solution to track a misplaced or lost phone. It will not work on other devices – not even other Android devices. To get it to work, you will require a Samsung account, so get one as soon as you get a device. If you already have one and you misplace the phone, here are the steps to locate it:

  • Go to and login to your account. You can do it from any Internet connected device.
  • Once logged in, you will see all the devices associated with that account in the dashboard. Choose the one you are trying to find.
  • Select the option to locate your mobile on the left menu.
  • A map will show you the real-time location of your mobile device.

Use a Third Party Application

Third party applications work on most devices. As long as you can find it in the official application store, you can download and install it. Most of them are created with family monitoring purposes – you add your entire family, so you always know where your loved ones are. On the same note, you can use one of your family members’ device to find your phone.

Some other applications are specifically designed for your own phone. Obviously, they must be installed before the phone is actually lost or misplaced. They provide access to an online dashboard that you can access from any other devices. Simply put, they work like proprietary applications of operating systems or phone manufacturers, only they are supposed to have more beneficial features.

Some of the top applications include:

  • Family Locator
  • Cerberus
  • Prey
  • Lost Android
  • Where’s My Droid
  • Find My Friends
  • FoneHome
  • Device Locator

Use an Online Service

There are quite a bunch of websites that can locate your phone without asking you to install anything. You simply put the phone number in, give the website a few seconds and check out the result. They come with a few extra benefits, as they often rely on triangulation to locate a phone – they grab the signal between phones and cell towers, so they can approximate the distance.

Websites like will provide lots of information regarding a number. You might need to wait a couple of minutes for the search to be finished, but it is totally worth it.


Bottom line, a misplaced phone is not necessarily a lost phone these days, especially as you have so many options to find it. Most of them fail to work without installing or setting up an application, so this should be one of your priorities once you get a new smartphone.​