The other day we discussed how to find lost Android device without any helping app installed on your phone or tablet. Well, due to overwhelming response and requests by iOS users here is new tutorial explaining ways you can use to track lost iPhone/iPad without any tracking app installed. If you are reading this, i am assuming that you have been through that tough ordeal of losing expensive iOS device but didn’t have any app or features enabled to help your find the lost device now. However, there is a good news for you guys because you can track and find lost iOS device by following instructions in this guide.
There are some extremely easy ways of finding lost iPhone and iPad, just follow every steps as it is down below and you will have your precious iOS device back in your hands, if you get lucky.
1 – Find Lost iPhone/iPad with Google Location History
Before moving ahead there is one thing you should note that this method assumes you had location history and reporting features enabled on your lost iOS device.
Enabling Location services on your device could be a double-edged sword, on one hand it helps track and recover lost or misplaced device and on the other hand it lets Apple, and Google for that matter as well when you use their iOS apps, to monitor and keep the record of your location history on their servers. When some might consider this intrusion of privacy, other can help but thank for this feature to recover lost devices. In the end it’s the matter of perspective how you see it.
Back to our main topic, If you use Google Timeline (previously known as Location History) on iPhone and iPad, which most people do thanks to disastrous Apple maps app, it tracks your location history data from iPhone/iPad and keeps the record of it.
You can access your location history data in user-friendly interface of Google Timeline app. It shows your recent locations on the maps using which you can guess where you might have lost or misplaced iPhone or iPad. Most recent location data depends when was the last time your device was connected to the internet and has location service on. It’s best to have internet and location services on at all times, especially when you are outside home.
Now if your lost device is still connected to the internet and has location service on then you can see its current location from maps in Google’s Timeline map app. This even works when the device’s battery is dead. See on the map where your device is and how you can recover it.
Follow these steps to visit location history:
- Go to google.com/maps/timeline
- Enter today’s date by clicking Today button on the top left corner of the screen
- On the right side of the screen there will be a map of recent location of your device and on the left a timeline of time and places where your device was last spotted on the map.
- Use location data feature to find out if your device is moving or static. If its moving then you can be sure that someone has it, in this case you can either call your number to find out who it is on the other end or report to police for lost device. If it is not moving on the map then it could be that you placed it somewhere and forgot to pick it.
2 – Track Lost iPhone/iPad using iCloud
First thing first, always have Find My iPhone feature enabled. If you did not activate Find My iPhone/iPad Feature on your Apple device or created iCloud account with Find My Device feature enabled then this method is not suitable for you to track lost iPhone and iPad.
What’s best thing about this method is that you don’t need or have to have Find My iPhone/iPad app installed on lost device to recover it. This Find my Device is cloud base service and all it requires is a web browser and Apple Login ID to locate your device on the map.
There is another useful feature on iOS devices having iOS 7 or later installed on them, you can remotely lock your lost device with Activation Lock feature that prevents other person from accessing your iPhone or iPad without your Apple ID details and wipe your device, log out of Find My iPhone or disconnect iCloud.
Here’s how to find lost iPhone or iPad.
Use iCloud to Find Lost Device
- Go to iCloud.com and login by entering Apple ID email and password. You can access iCloud from PC, tablet, or from your spare phone.
- On iCloud dashboard you will see several icons, click on ‘Find My iPhone‘ icon
- On Find My iPhone interface click All Devices option from drop-down menu and select lost device.
- This will start tracking that device with its location showing on the map.
- Now you can choose to pick acoustic signal option to hear the voice of other person in possession of your device, or active Lost Mode.
Lost Mode locks your device after which it can only be accessed with your password. Or you can choose to send a message to lost device with a contact number so that a nice person on the other end might contact you to return your device. You can even enable Location Services on your lost device if it was OFF from iCloud account. You will be able to see device location on the map as long as Lost Mode is on.
Go with erase entire device data option in the end after expiring all other options because after wiping out the device you won’t be able to access its location even via Find My iPhone with current Apple ID.
For all this to work hope that your lost device is still connected to the internet. You cannot see device location on mobile network, for Find My iPhone method to work it must be connected to a WiFi network.
Now that you know how to track lost iPhone or iPad with methods described above, you can implement them to recover lost iOS device provided everything goes your way. By everything i mean, your device is connected to the internet.
ONE MORE THING, you cannot monitor or track lost device if its in Airplane Mode because it disable internet connection to the device which is needed to track the phone. But you can see current location the moment lost device is connected to the internet again. Similarly, if someone erases all data on your iPhone, tacking it becomes impossible because it also deletes iCloud account and services linked to it such as Find My iPhone. In this case use Google Timeline method above.
You can find the location service of the lost iOS device even when the location services are off on the device. For that you need to login to iCloud account and click Find My iPhone and activate Lost Mode to turn on location service on the device from remote place. If you are not around any PC then borrow phone from friend or someone to login to iCloud or Google Timeline to monitor lost device’s location.
How to setup new iCloud password if you forgot the current one:
If you forgot iCloud password and can’t seem to remember it, there is a way of setting up a new iCloud password to access Find My iPhone feature to locate lost iOS device.
- Open web browser and go to appleid.apple.com
- Click the link ‘Forgot Apple ID or Password?’
- Type Apple ID email address and hit continue
- You can recover forgotten iCloud password in two way: by sending reset link to your backup email address and by answering the security questions that you set at the time of creating Apple ID account.
- I suggest you go with backup email account option. For that click ‘Get an email’ link.
- Now sign-in to your backup email address, open iCould password recovery email. Then click the password reset link and follow on-screen instructions. Here you need to type in answer to the security question and your date of birth.
- Now enter the new password and confirm it.
- All done! Now you can login to all apple devices with new password. Old one won’t work anymore.
I sincerely hope that you would be able to find your lost iPhone or iPad by using instructions mentioned above. Thoughts? Let us know about what you think in the comments section below.