Google puts its own 'find my device' app in the Play Store

Summary:If you have multiple Android devices, Google's new Android Device Manager app will be a welcome addition.

After a fairly long wait, Google has released the Android equivalent to Apple's 'Find my iPhone' app.

The app, which is now free in the Google Play Store, is based on the Android Device Manager locator service which was first released in August but only available through a browser.

The app provides essentially the same functionality as the website, letting users pinpoint a missing or misplaced device on Google Maps and ring it at full volume, even it was switched to silent before being lost, for five minutes.

The app also lets Android device owners remotely add a screen lock to their device to prevent any unlocked devices being used by anyone else before they're found, and supports remote data wiping.

2013-12-12 10.26.37 am
Image: Google

Although it does the same thing as the web version, as Google notes in its announcement, the idea behind it is to make it easier for people to use the service if they're out and don't have access to a computer.

The app (on a 2013 edition Nexus 7 at least) also seems a little more responsive than the web interface on the tablet, making it easier to locate an Android phone from the tablet or vice versa. 

With analysts at Canalys forecasting 185 million Android tablets will be sold in 2014, accounting for 65 percent of overall PC sales, Google's delivery of its own locator and remote-wipe app seems well-timed. It will have to compete with the dozens of third-party Android security apps already out there, offering similar functions to Android Device Manager.

Further reading

Topics: Security, Android

About

Liam Tung is an Australian business technology journalist living a few too many Swedish miles north of Stockholm for his liking. He gained a bachelors degree in economics and arts (cultural studies) at Sydney's Macquarie University, but hacked (without Norse or malicious code for that matter) his way into a career as an enterprise tech, s... Full Bio

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