Find my device: you will be able to easily find your lost or stolen Android

Google is finally rolling out its new Find My Device network in France to help Android users find lost smartphones and other Bluetooth trackers without internet or GPS.

It is finally the end of this unfortunate misfortune that does not only happen to others. Because the loss or theft of a mobile phone inevitably takes on a dramatic dimension when the device contains a large part of our lives. Personal photos, bank details, various contact details, messages… No one wants all this information to fall into the wrong hands. Fortunately, today there are simple solutions to find it (see our practice sheet). In particular, Apple has an effective network that allows you to find a lost iPhone even if it is disconnected. For this, the localization system uses technology Bluetooth. Simply put, when an iPhone is lost, it sends out a Bluetooth signal that is picked up by others iPhone, which then serves as a relay. Using this system, the last known location of a lost device can be sent to its owner through other people’s devices. The principle is the same for AirTags.

Three years later AppleIn turn, Google is deploying a network similar to that offered by Apple, based on Bluetooth and powered by all smartphones Android the world. Introduced during Google I/O 2023, the “Find my device” feature began rolling out in the United States and Canada in early April, the company announced in blog post. It aims, as its name suggests, to help users better locate their devices. In an email sent to some of its users, the Internet giant announces the deployment of the network in France on Saturday, May 25, 2024. Finally!

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Find My Device: Bluetooth network with millions of devices

Google For quite some time now, it has offered a “Find My Device” feature that allows you to locate your Android device using its GPS coordinates. However, this was very limited, while Apple did much better with its AirTag network. Google also promised to create a similar network in 2023. Now it’s done. With this new version of “Find My Device”, users can find their lost Android device by ringing it or showing its location on the map in the application of the same name, even when they are offline. Note that the Pixel 8 and 8 Pro have the right to a unique feature in that they can be placed on the network even when they are turned off or have a dead battery – smartphones from other manufacturers should have the right to follow suit.

In addition to Android devices running Android 9 or higher, this new network will also support various Bluetooth trackers. Chipolo, Pebblebee, Motorola, Eufy and Jio have already announced compatible models. Some JBL speakers or headphones are also supported. You will find full list of devices here – others will be announced later. Note that it is possible to share accessories in the app with other users, so that anyone who has access to it can find it.

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Google is aware that this type of service raises privacy concerns and therefore ensures that its network “is secure by default and private by design”with location data and location summary reports encrypted end-to-end. Further avoid abuse associated with the use of Bluetooth trackers – espionage, burglary, harassment, etc. –, Google in cooperation with Apple has developed a standard for locating unwanted marks from all smartphones (see our article). Notifications now alert users when they are being tracked by an unknown Bluetooth tracker. The network also limits the number of times the exact position of a beacon can be obtained to prevent too accurate continuous tracking.

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