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Google Announces Android Device Manager, a Tool to Help Find Your Lost Device

Device Manager

The Android team took to the official blog today to announce a feature that all Android users need, whether they want to admit it or not. If your Android device gets lost/misplaced, you can now use Android Device Manager to locate its exact position or you can “ring” your device. If your phone has been stolen, you can also use the service to remotely wipe your device, ensuring that your info and its private contents are safe. 

The service will go live later this month, and be available for devices running Android 2.2+. A separate Device Manager application will go live at the same time, so stay tuned for when that will happen.

This is great news.

Via: Android Blog

  • Michael

    “The service will go live later this month” Unless you’re a Google Apps user then expect it sometime around 3319.

  • DatDudeMQ

    This is cool that google finally made an app like this, however, I prefer the “lookout mobile security” app as it does the same thing (and with some extra awesome features) It also doubles as an antivirus and is able to make sure everything you download and all your apps are safe from viruses.

  • Nagini

    Awesome! Now we just need to be able to take pictures of the thief!

  • Brandon Golway

    I hope Google integrates this into Android. I used to use WaveSecure all the time but stopped using it because it was too much of a pain to set up each time I flashed a new rom or I would just simply forget about it. Since T-Mobile gives me Lookout Pro for free I’ve been using that recently.

  • Marcus

    This type of feature should be system app like it is with Apple. Hate to compare but Apple did get this right on the money. Great feature and I’ve had colleagues mention they got their iPad/iPhone back that was left somewhere. Also comical when someone steals a iDevice and they take a pix of themselves and it syncs to owners iTunes

  • Ryan Stewart

    About time. This being an apps option only was a bit of a joke.

  • Stew

    so Google copied Apple?

  • Tyler

    This needs to be able to change security of the device so that I can pass code my device until I find it. Wipe would be overkill in that situation. Maybe I’ll be able to Uninstall my anti-virus software now.

  • Tabassamsdtm

    Love my
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    work in front of my new iMac that I got now that I’m making it online…
    http://www.Pro67.ℂom

  • Ian Smith

    i <3 google

  • droidrazredge

    This sounds a lot like Cerberus and thanks to a droid life article in June I was able to get a Cerberus Lifetime License is Free from AppGratis. Cerberus does what this does but with some extra cool security features. It was one of the best deals I’ve seen on AppGratis since then! Thanks droid-life, because of you I won’t need this app but I’ll be sure to tell my friends that missed out on the AppGratis deal.

  • Dave

    What was the app called that would, change your unlock code to PIN, lock your GPS on and silently take forward facing photos, and email them to you with the exact location called.

    • Jorge

      Lookout, SeekDroid or Cerberus. Most likely the latter.

  • Mike

    I use Avast Mobile. It’s free and a great app.

  • Taylor Abrahamson

    Oh NOW they add it! LOL! I was up late last night tracking the thief who stole my mothers phone last night. 30 miles! I tracked her to her apartment and the police came and took it from her and gave it back to us. I used AndroidLost which has a ton of cool stuff you can do remotely! Here is the full story from my adventure last night:

    http://www.reddit.com/r/news/comments/1jktqd/stolen_phone_recovery_success_story_last_night/

    • Higher_Ground

      I would definitely press charges, even if only to ensure she never does it again. I’m glad the cops were able to help you out, it often seems like they don’t take crimes like this very seriously where I live.

  • http://www.rmuskis.com/ Luke OCHO Allen

    Nice!

  • Jimmy Leang

    Would have been nice to have this a week ago. I was mugged and the bastard took my phone and wallet. It would be awesome if i can still delete the info remotely after the service has been disconnected. Ill have to wait and see. Thanks for the info.

    • Higher_Ground

      damn that sucks, I hope you’re alright after that. I know I would hate to think that someone who attacked me had the means to stalk my friends if they could still log into your contacts, social media, etc.

      • Jimmy Leang

        Im alright. Trying to rebuild from it. Changed pw for all my accounts. I hope i had a lockscreen set up. Thanks for caring. :D

  • Christopher Quan

    Would this allow you to turn a phone on that has been turned off? Now that would be something.

  • Curtis

    As a mobile device manager for our company… this is a step in the right direction. I am excited about this.

  • bboyairwreck

    WELL ABOUT FREAKIN TIME

  • BeLogical

    About time! One of the few features Android was missing.

  • Cristi

    Why didn’t they put it on the 4.3 ?

    • sagisarius

      It was already there. They put it in android a while ago for like business customers on an exchange server, or something like that. All there doing here is making a web interface so everyone has access to it.

  • JamesU513

    So long Lookout

  • eidylon

    I’ve always used Lookout for this. But the one feature Lookout has this doesn’t (at least based on what they’ve said so far) is being able to uber-lock your device and put a “please contact me to return my device” message on the screen.

  • Cody Revels

    This is great, Apple has had a service like this for a while, its about time that Android has this geature.

    • http://androidforums.com/members/kwest12.html kwest12

      Honestly, they should just acquire a company like Cerberus and incorporate that app into the core of Android. That’s a feature that is really always needed, imo.

      • brkshr

        No thanks! There is no way that Google would keep all of the features that Cerberus has. It’s too powerful. Cerberus should stay to themselves.

    • Zach K

      Lookout has allowed you to do this, for free+no root access, for at least a few years now. It also works a helluvalot better then the baked-in Apple solution when i compared the two.

      • Cody Revels

        Well, obviously there are a dozen or more third party solutions but things like that are what make ‘normal’ consumers choose iphone over android and this is one less thing that apple provides that google doesnt. I always prefer google apps to third party ones.

        • Higher_Ground

          I had lookout but would prefer a native app for just the basic locate, lock, wipe features.

  • joejoe5709

    Oh that is way cool. I’ve tried just about all the security apps and I almost always uninstall them within a couple months. So this will be worthy of a test run. :-)

    • Justin W

      I don’t think it’s optional – I’m pretty sure it’s going to be build into the OS, or if not, through Play Services.

    • Scott H

      Have you tried Cerberus? I had used a couple different ones over the years, but after reading all kinds of mentions here one time I gave it a try and never looked back.

  • RedXander

    While certainly not revolutionary, it’s nice to see this. I’m not ashamed to say I’ve used similar third party apps to figure out what side of my house the phone was on.

  • duke69111

    I wish you didn’t need to install an app though and it was built into say 4.3+, only requiring an app if you are 4.2.2 or below. Maybe they will integrate it into 5.0 KLP.

    • joejoe5709

      Agreed. I hope it gets baked right into that Key Lime Pie.

      • Justin W

        @duke69111:disqus I believe it’s going to be built into Play Services, or at least, that’s what would make sense to me. That’s how they added the Google Settings app, so it would only make sense they push this to all devices with Play Service, right?

  • 2Berad

    yes sir this makes me happy:)

  • JG

    Did they announce the off-contract price for the Moto X and when it’ll be available on the play store?

    Oh…no? OK…

    • Justin W

      Not relevant.

  • http://www.twitter.com/nblufire12 Nathan Patel

    Cerberus though?

    • Silver Veloz
      • http://www.twitter.com/nblufire12 Nathan Patel

        My fav lost phone app!

        • Guest

          Clearly you’ve never been to Singapore.

    • duke69111

      Yea, they should by Cerberus and integrate it into the operating system starting with 5.0.

      • http://www.twitter.com/nblufire12 Nathan Patel

        Agreed, tons more features but doesn’t it require root?

        • YesNathan

          Yes, however, Google has root access.

          • steveindajeep

            lol

        • duke69111

          I doesn’t require it, it just adds more features if you are rooted. However if it was built into the Operating System, it would have root I would think.

          From the Play Store: More features for rooted devices: complete uninstall protection (a thief will be able to delete Cerberus only by flashing another ROM), GPS auto-enabling even on Android > 2.3.3. More info on the website in the Help section.

      • brkshr

        Like I said above. Cerberus is too powerful for the average user. If Google took over, it would have to be dumbed down. Great idea in theory, but I think it would come with side effects that you wouldn’t like.

    • MikeCiggy

      Yup, easily the best security app ever. Although those drunk pictures of me I always get in my inbox make me feel some type of slow.

      • http://androidforums.com/members/kwest12.html kwest12

        I… don’t get it…

        • MikeCiggy

          If you use cerberus there is an option for it to snap a picture of someone who gets your passcode wrong a number of times.

          • http://androidforums.com/members/kwest12.html kwest12

            You clever son of a bee.

          • Raven

            Lookout has this option as well for free. I have received several pictures of my daughter trying to unlock my phone.

        • Nate

          With Cerberus enabled, if someone incorrectly types the wrong password 3 times, it takes a picture of the person doing it and emails it to a specified address. You can imagine how many times a person could mistype their password when drinking.

  • Randall Wanamaker

    The next step is to allow me to dis-associate devices I no longer own from my Google/Play accounts.

    • GoBlue

      You can actually do that within the settings on the google play web page. I don’t know if it completely disassociates your device (you can always re-enable it), but you don’t have to see that pesky device on the list of installable devices.

      • Randall Wanamaker

        All it allows is for you to do is hide the device. At least that’s all that was available the last time I looked.

        • Justtyn Hutcheson

          They are automatically purged from your account but it takes a while.

          I agree though, a “Remove device” button would be welcome.

          • Ben

            How long is a “while”? My first ever Android phone (A Virgin Mobile Optimus V) still shows, and it last accessed Google Play in December of 2011. I think it was still called the Marketplace then. lol

          • dvschnk

            I think it goes away quicker if it was “activated” under another account. My sister is using my Droid X as a wifi only PMP, and I no longer have that phone under my account.

          • Ben

            That might explain it. The Optimus V is just sitting in a drawer.

        • michael arazan

          For a while it hid my D1, but now it is showing it again when I use the Desktop Play store to download remotely to my phone or tablet

      • Ian

        You blue it.

        • paulmike3

          Screw Blue.

  • Higher_Ground

    awesome, about time, and will it work on another person’s phone (app or mobile browser)

    • Justin W

      Based on the screen shot, it looks like you can use it from a browser. Not sure about the app, but I know one’s coming, so that’s gotta mean something.