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How ‘Find My iPhone’ Actually Works

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Apple Inc. produced a valuable asset: the Find My monitoring feature, which lets you locate any lost Apple devices and third-party accessories linked to your iCloud account.

This article will teach you many methods for locating your misplaced gadgets.

Find My App

The Find My app combines the Find My Friends and Find My iPhone apps. It’s a slick improvement that makes it easier to find any Apple gadget you’re looking for. Since the app’s inception, new functionality such as tracking when an iPhone or iPhone device is unplugged, turned down, or even erased has been introduced.

The software is divided into categories, and you may access any of them by tapping the accessible tabs. Individuals, my devices, Airbags, and Find My-enabled Bluetooth are in the center, with a “Me” page with all your information and settings on your right and left.

Like the previous Find My iPhone app, you can get a list of all your Apple goods. If you have devices logged into your iCloud account and your Find My feature enabled, Apple’s Find My will be able to find your device on a map, and you can zoom in or out to obtain the exact position of your missing iPhone, iPad, AirPods Max, or any other Apple device. It is as simple as tapping one device to obtain directions to your other devices.

How to Enable Find My iPhone

The Find My app may be enabled on your new iPhone, but be sure it was turned off earlier to avoid activation issues.

If your iPhone isn’t responding or you can’t access it, you may disable it using iCloud.

To disable the app, make sure your iPhone is linked to a portable Wi-Fi or a steady internet connection.

The Find My app, iPad, or iPod Touch app is disabled, but Apple’s servers are not

Related: How to turn off “FIND MY IPHONE” with and without Apple ID

How to Enable Find My iPhone (Step by Step)

Note: The instructions below do not apply to the iPhone 4 or 4s.

  1. Tap the Settings app from your home screen’s main menu.
    Swipe to the left to open your app library if your settings aren’t shown on your home screen.
  2. Tap on your name from the main settings panel at the top of the settings menu.
  3. Choose ‘Find My’.
  4. Select your versions, such as iOS 14.4 and other versions.
  5. By pressing the Switch on or off the Toggle button, you may enable or disable ‘Find My.’
  6. If prompted, enter your Apple ID password and then exit. You may also toggle the Send Last Device’s Location option on or off.

How to Locate Apple Devices Using Apple Watch

You may use your Apple Watch to track down a misplaced iPhone or another gadget. Your gadgets will be difficult to discover if you do not link them to your Apple ID. As a result, you must only find them if they are related.

Switch on your watch and open the ‘Find My’ App, press on the lost device, and if the item is recoverable, it displays on the map, and you can see the last position, last internet or Wi-Fi connection time, and even the percentage of charged device.

If the device cannot be detected, you will get a pop-up message—No location next to the device name—in addition to the gadget on your watch screen.

When you enable the “Notify When Found” user notification on your watch, you will receive an alert when the device is discovered.
Using Sounds on Your Apple Watch to Locate Your Apple Devices

Launch the ‘Find My’ app and listen to the sound on your watch. You’ll see a button with the word “Play” on it. Press the button. If the gadget is linked to a decent internet source, it begins to play for around two minutes with the volume gradually rising, or the device vibrates and a ‘Find My’ notice appears on your screen. You will also receive a message via the email address associated with your Apple ID.

If there are no noises, it is possible that there are no internet connections, in which case you will see Sound Pending. The sound starts playing as soon as your lost gadget connects to a portable Wi-Fi or internet connection.

Locate Your Apple Device Without Turning on Connection

With the iOS 15 update, you may be able to locate your device that has been switched off by utilizing the ‘Find My’ App. The incredible part is that if the gadget is adjacent to an iPhone or another Apple device, it may be found; to shut off or extremely low in power.

This functionality was added to iOS 15 as an upgrade to accommodate Apple devices that were turned off. After iOS 13, you may discover your devices without a connection by using nearby iPhones, iPads, and MacBooks.

However, Apple has not communicated this capability to the general audience. Still, it is most likely due to the U1 chip, Bluetooth, or NFC operating even if your smartphone has a low battery or is turned off, and this tracking may extend for up to three hours in the former situation.

Track iPhone with Apple ID

Tap the All Devices button under ‘Find My’ on iCloud.com. Select the device you wish to find. The name of the device would subsequently be shown in the toolbar’s center.

If the gadget is traceable, it will be displayed on a map, giving you an estimated position.

Please keep in mind that your air pods might be split. On the map, you can only view one air pod position at a time. Begin by locating one pod at a time, placing it in its case, and then searching the map for the other.

If you cannot find the device you are looking for, the device’s name and an offline message with the last known position will be shown.

Tap “Notify me when discovered” to receive an email with the location details. To find another Apple device, navigate to your device list by pressing on the current device in the toolbar, then pick a new device.

If you stop using your iPhone, iPad, or Macbook, make sure to remove it from the ‘Find My’ app so it does not reappear.

Find A Device That Belongs to A Family Member or A Friend

You may assist a friend or family member in the hunt for a lost phone by utilizing your ‘Find My iPhone on iCloud.com. You may see their gadgets right beneath yours in a Family Sharing group.

Every member of your family should configure their devices to share their whereabouts with other family members. After you’ve configured it, you may utilize the location-sharing tool to track down your misplaced iPhone.

You cannot, however, utilize the same techniques to assist your buddy in locating the last known location of their iOS device. If your buddy misplaces their device, they may use their Apple ID to log in to the icloud.com/find site.

You cannot trace a friend’s phone using the ‘Find My iPhone feature. Friends who have misplaced a device can use their Apple ID to check in at icloud.com/find.

  1. Select the device that is missing from the devices list. Then, tap on a green dot that appears on the map.
  2. To update the device’s location, press the Refresh button.
  3. Drag the map to move it.
  4. You can open a Trackpad by tapping the zoom-in button or pinching it open with your fingers, and vice versa if you wish to close one.
  5. Tap the map button in the top-right corner, then select the type of view you want: standard, satellite, or hybrid.

Tracking Disabled Apple Devices

If your iPhone or iOS device is stolen and deleted, you can still discover it since it will display in the ‘Find My’ app, and you may track it with iOS 15.

This function is linked to Activation Lock, which helps to prevent unauthorized access to your iPhone by utilizing your Apple ID and password. If a device is stolen, the Activation Lock turns on in iOS 14 and preceding updates. This stops unauthorized users from accessing your iPhone. However, your ‘Find My’ app is blocked as a result of this operation. The ‘Find My’ app is the most precise and effective way to locate a switched-off device.

On a fresh welcome screen, it is clear that the device is locked, that it belongs to another person, and that it may be traced using the ‘Find My’ app. This raises awareness and prevents someone else from purchasing a gadget associated with your Apple account.

Tracking AirTags

Apple announced the debut of Airtags in the early second quarter of 2021. AirTags are tiny, circular Bluetooth trackers that can link to objects such as vehicle keys, wallets, and any other gadget you wish to track. They may be tracked in your ‘Find My’ app with other Apple devices, and they can also be treated similarly to other Apple items.

In iOS 14, Apple introduced ‘Find My’ for third-party devices such as Bluetooth gadgets that are linked to the ‘Find My’ app.

In April 2021, Belkin SOUNDFORM Freedom True wireless earbuds, Chipolo ONE Spot item tags, and VanMoof electric bikes were the first items included in the ‘Find My’ Accessory Program. These accessories are accessible via the ‘Find My’ map, Play Sounds, and Lost mode.

Third-party accessories are accessible via the ‘Find My’ Network Accessory and Airtags in similar ways. They are, however, independent of one another.

Third-party accessories are accessible via the ‘Find My’ Network Accessory and Airtags in similar ways. They are, however, independent of one another.

Anti-Stalking and Tracking Safety Measures

You can prevent being stalked and tracked by your gadget. The ‘Find My’ app now includes a function that alerts you when a Bluetooth device is nearby, as well as other unfamiliar Bluetooth—’Find My’ compatible devices. This allows you to double-check and prevent being followed by another individual.

Discover Misplaced Item

When you come across an item with an AirTag, you may scan it with any device to find out who owns it by utilizing the scanning option “Identify Lost Item” in the ‘Find My’ app. However, the owner may be able to see the true position.


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I'm Edmar Consular, an Automotive Technician Undergrad and I took Adobe Photoshop Short Courses. I am a Junior Editor here at Manila Shaker, I write article reviews, tech news, and scripts for our YouTube content.

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