You read it correctly. I think find-my-iPhone is a useless product. Every day I read on Facebook that someone’s phone is snatched on the street. Seldom I read a success story that someone could recover its phone. But mostly it ends in a bitter story. The phone disappears off the face of the earth. I was one of the commenters who will mention using find-my-iPhone if an Apple product was stolen. But slowly I realize it’s a silly recommendation.

What is “find my iPhone?”

It’s that function built in every Apple’s computer, tablet, and mobile phone. Its name reveals what it does. It helps you to locate your device. In the past, it has helped me many times. I could not find my iPad. A quick look in find-my-iPhone tells me it was at my work. I couldn’t find my iPhone. A loud beep under my pillow reunification me with my phone.

Disable find-your-iPhone in only ten seconds

First problem. If your phone gets stolen, the thief will power off the phone. I will repeat. If your phone got stolen, the thief will turn it off. That’s the first big problem with find-my-phone. There is no obstacle to turn a phone off. It’s a fundamental low-level solution to turn find-my-iPhone off. The thief doesn’t need a GPS jammer. The thief doesn’t need to remove a sim card. He just needs to turn off the phone. Every IQ70< thief can do this.

Imagine this. The thief snatched the phone from your hand. When he drives off on his motorbike, he will push the power button with one finger. 20 seconds after your phone got stolen it’s turned off. There goes any chance to track your phone.

Solution

The simple solution Apple can build in to protect the power off with a passcode. You can’t turn the phone off without a passcode. Simple.

You need an Apple product to track it.

One day I couldn’t find my iPhone. I borrowed my girlfriends’ Galaxy S7 to track my phone. This is an expensive flagship phone made by Samsung that runs Android. Apple’s iCloud website told me that the browser on this two-year-old Android phone is not supported. There goes your possibility to track an iPhone with an Android phone.

Solution

Write the find-my-iPhone website in a code that meets the web standards. Make access to the find-my-iPhone easy. Don’t exclude devices. Any second counts.

A needle in a haystack

You are in luck. The thief’s mother was also his sister. He didn’t turn off the phone. You successfully logged on the iCloud website. You see, a dot moving on a map. You know exactly where your phone is. Then the dot stops. It’s in a building. But then the dot jumps 20 meters. A minute later, the dot jumps 50 meters. This is GPS by design. If the GPS receiver in your phone doesn’t have a clear view of the sky, its accuracy can drop to 50-100 meters. So in which building is your phone? To narrow your options, you think when was the last time your phone had the last clear view of the sky? Before the thief entered the building, the phone had its most accurate position. But there is no playback button in find-my-iPhone. So you have no idea which door the thief used.

Solution

The moment you hit the lost-mode on find-my-iPhone the location will be logged. No energy-save mode. The GPS will run in its most accurate mode. Every second, the location is logged on the Apple servers. You know exactly how the thief moved with your phone. You can use a playback function on the map.

It’s still hard to find a phone. The police won’t help because they have no idea where the device is. I saw in a YouTube video that trackers in expensive motorbikes also send a beep on a radio frequency. The police can use a pin-point device to see where the bike is exactly. Why not turn Bluetooth and WIFI in a beacon mode? You can track where the phone is. When you are really close, you turn the sound on and use your ears to find your phone.

Bye bye phone

Admit. Most things I wrote won’t work. You just threw away five minutes by reading this post. The thief will order from AliExpress a special pouch, which will block all radio signals. The police won’t help you to recover your phone. It’s too much work. Most phones that got stolen are for the spare-parts market. The thief turns your phone off for forever. The next day, the phone is completely disassembled. Selling parts is less risk than selling a stolen phone.

The best solution is to be careful. Don’t hold your phone in your hand on the street. By aware of your surroundings. And make sure that you make regular backups of the phone.

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