(Edit: This post is updated on 8/6/2014 to include the latest screen captures and features of Android Device Manager.)
Google has recently released Android Device Manager which is a service that helps Android users to locate, lock and factory reset their lost devices.
Here’s how you use it.
i. How to setup the Android Device Manager ?
The Android Device Manager feature is available on your Android devices natively without the need of installing a new app for it.
However, you do need to ensure you have the Internet connection and Location services enabled, and the right settings configured, in order for Android Device Manager to find and reset your phone.
- On your Android device, find and launch the Google Settings app.
- Tap Location, then slide the Location switch to the right.
- Get back to the Google Settings main menu, then tap Android Device Manager.
- On the Android Device Manager screen, ensure both Remotely locate this device and Allow remote lock and erase are checked.
- Now, sign in to your Google account at https://www.google.com/android/devicemanager, and you should see your device being listed there. If not, follow the troubleshooting steps described on this help page.
Note: Again, ensure your device has the Internet connection (either Wi-Fi or Mobile Data) and location services enabled in order for Android Device Manager to work properly.
ii. How to use Android Device Manager ?
- Sign in to your Google account at https://www.google.com/android/devicemanager
- As soon as you sign in, the site will start locating your device, and show it on a map. To refresh the location, click .
- If you’ve more than one device, click the arrow key to select the device you want to manage.
- Now, you can click Ring to ring your device at full volume for 5 minutes.
- Click Lock to set a new password to lock your device.
- If need be, click Erase to factory reset your device. Once reset, your phone will no longer appear on the Android Device Manager.
iii. Android Device Manager VS. Samsung Find my mobile
If you’re using a Samsung phone or tablet, you probably know about the similar service offered by Samsung, which is called Find My Mobile.
As of now, Find my Mobile has more features compared to the newly introduced Android Device Manager. And if you care to find out their differences, below is the table of comparison between these 2 services.
|Services||Android Device Manager||Find My Mobile|
|Locate your device||Yes||Yes|
|Track your device movement||No||No|
|Lock your device||No||Yes|
|Ring your device||Yes||Yes|
|Set call/message forwarding||No||Yes|
|Retrieve call logs||No||Yes|
|Unlock your device||No||Yes|