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MacRumors
Jun 24, 2009, 09:35 AM
http://www.macrumors.com/images/macrumorsthreadlogo.gif (http://www.macrumors.com/iphone/2009/06/24/find-my-iphone-reunites-owner-with-his-iphone/)


http://images.macrumors.com/article/2009/06/24/103430-happywaffle_500.jpg


While many users have tested out the iPhone OS 3.0's "Find My iPhone" feature, which allows MobileMe customers to track the location of their lost iPhone, send alerts to the device in order to assist with recovery, and to perform remote wipes for data security, few have had the need to activate the system in hopes of finding a truly lost iPhone. MacRumors member happywaffle, whose real name is Kevin Miller, is one of those (un)lucky few, and the story of his iPhone pursuit (http://happywaffle.livejournal.com/5890.html) has drawn considerable attention in recent days.

Kevin's story begins with a trip to a Lego convention in Chicago, where he left his iPhone behind in a "sketchy dive bar". Despite immediately realizing that he no longer had his iPhone and returning to the bar within five minutes, it was nowhere to be found. The following day, the chase ensued, with Kevin and his friends traveling around Chicago using a MacBook Pro with a Sprint 3G dongle to track the missing iPhone.

Between tracking the iPhone via GPS and sending alert messages to the device via the "Find My iPhone" Web interface, Kevin was eventually able to locate his iPhone and the bar employee who had it in his possession. Kevin's story makes for an amusing and interesting read, demonstrating the value of the "Find My iPhone" feature while also revealing a few glitches and showing just how many things had to go right in order for him to find his iPhone.

Article Link: 'Find My iPhone' Reunites Owner With His iPhone (http://www.macrumors.com/iphone/2009/06/24/find-my-iphone-reunites-owner-with-his-iphone/)



joro
Jun 24, 2009, 09:38 AM
I read this story when he initially posted it and while I want to believe its true, it sounded a little bogus. I mean running around a city with a laptop and being able to track down a guy in a group of people? :rolleyes:

jbgh
Jun 24, 2009, 09:44 AM
phonecall
"hey mate i left my phone at your bar last night"
"oh no worries come pick it up"

RainbowOfBeans
Jun 24, 2009, 09:48 AM
I dont know how you could call this story creditable when there is so little detail into the search and into the "Luck" part.....what was the hard part that if that one thing hadn't happened he would still be without his iPhone now??:confused:

yetanotherdave
Jun 24, 2009, 09:50 AM
Who else was waiting for the "three white nerdy dudes" walking round a bad neighbourhood with a macbook out to get mugged?

Glad he got it back, but that could have made it a whole lot worse.

Shasterball
Jun 24, 2009, 09:54 AM
Lucky he didn't get hurt, but pretty entertaining!

joro
Jun 24, 2009, 09:54 AM
Who else was waiting for the "three white nerdy dudes" walking round a bad neighbourhood with a macbook out to get mugged?

Glad he got it back, but that could have made it a whole lot worse.

Now THAT would have been funny. Imagine the guy looking for his iPhone, finding the guy, and the guy beating him and his friend up and stealing the MacBook. :D

SuperKat
Jun 24, 2009, 10:06 AM
Congrats Kevin!
Would be better though if they were driving around town in a special little car like GeekSquad.

mdntcallr
Jun 24, 2009, 10:24 AM
apple ought to make a mobileme page login for mobile handsets, so you can login and control the find my iphone functions faster and easier when on the go. ie be able to use your friend's iphone/blackberry to send the notes to the phone, or track the phone.

slu
Jun 24, 2009, 10:28 AM
The most amazing part of this story to me is that there is such a thing as a Lego convention. Getting the iPhone back makes sense. That is exactly what the feature is designed to do.

AforAndromeda
Jun 24, 2009, 10:45 AM
hmmm.... not sure...

Anyways - I had problems getting Mobile Me setup and I cancelled it all. I'm not sure I want it back on my Windows setup.

Is the MobileMe the only route for this security idea, or is there another route.

I might have to 'bite the bullet' , but I'd like to check out options.

:confused:

avigalante
Jun 24, 2009, 10:46 AM
While there is a possibility this story is true, I do remain skeptical to say the least.

The fact that the iPhone battery had just enough power to be reunited with its rightful owner screams Hollywood...

RTiii320
Jun 24, 2009, 10:47 AM
saw this here on these forums a couple days ago, it is a great story.. Luckily it ended how it did and nothing happened to the "hunters" while they were locating the phone.

MacBoobsPro
Jun 24, 2009, 10:49 AM
I had to use Find my iphone today. I got to work only to realise I had not got my phone but I genuinely believed I had it in the car at some point.

I jumped on a PC (of all things) at work and used find my iphone only to tell me it was still at home. :rolleyes:

I sent a message to the phone saying "Dumbass" so when I retrieved it... :D

diesel
Jun 24, 2009, 10:57 AM
"Find My iPhone" wouldn't even be necessary if Apple simply provided a service by which if a phone/ipod is lost or stolen, the owner can report it stolen to apple, and then if the thief or finder attempts to plug it into a computer to sync or restore the device, the serial number is sent to apple, apple realizes it's a stolen device and contacts the appropriate authorities and provides the itunes account name/address. This was discussed before but people have been killed for their devices and I believe if the above was implemented then this would be deterrant enough to not completely eliminate violence against iphone/ipod owners by thieves, but definitely lower it.

marco114
Jun 24, 2009, 11:19 AM
I think it was real, they provided a bunch of screenshots of what the phone showed as they were tracking the person.

EgbertAttrick
Jun 24, 2009, 11:47 AM
Lego Convention?

rdowns
Jun 24, 2009, 11:48 AM
I think it was real, they provided a bunch of screenshots of what the phone showed as they were tracking the person.

The blog said the pics were simulated.

I call BS on the whole thing. Can't believe sites are eating this crap up. Oh wait, they get hits from it and can add Find my phone to their keywords for increased traffic.

Blue Fox
Jun 24, 2009, 12:16 PM
The blog said the pics were simulated.

I call BS on the whole thing. Can't believe sites are eating this crap up. Oh wait, they get hits from it and can add Find my phone to their keywords for increased traffic.

Wow, you can just go out there and claim B.S. without having to do any sort of validating or research?! You must be what they call a "credible source" lol.

As for the rest of us that enjoy a good story (exaggerated or not), it was entertaining, and was written to be so. A good story is a good story, take it for that. As to if it was overly-exaggerated or not, who cares. That's why they call it a story.

(and for the record, unless they were saving screen shots during the tracking, OF COURSE the images they show would be simulated. They posted "simulated" shots to show you what they were seeing.)

SatanLover
Jun 24, 2009, 12:23 PM
Wow, you can just go out there and claim B.S. without having to do any sort of validating or research?! You must be what they call a "credible source" lol.

As for the rest of us that enjoy a good story (exaggerated or not), it was entertaining, and was written to be so. A good story is a good story, take it for that. As to if it was overly-exaggerated or not, who cares. That's why they call it a story.

(and for the record, unless they were saving screen shots during the tracking, OF COURSE the images they show would be simulated. They posted "simulated" shots to show you what they were seeing.)

+1 i wish all the whiners would stop saying its all made up. too many whiners in macrumors forums...

chr1s60
Jun 24, 2009, 12:41 PM
Sounds believable to me. Kind of makes me want Find My iPhone.

naivetesucceeds
Jun 24, 2009, 01:10 PM
Who else was waiting for the "three white nerdy dudes" walking round a bad neighbourhood with a macbook out to get mugged?

Glad he got it back, but that could have made it a whole lot worse.

well, that's not actually a bad neighborhood where he was wandering around, pretty funny that he seemed to think so though. i know quite a few nerdy white dudes (and girls) who live within a few blocks of there.

twoodcc
Jun 24, 2009, 01:16 PM
glad he found his phone.

i really like this feature of mobileme and iphone. i just wish i could access the site from my iphone though, cuz i have one, and my wife has one as well

avigalante
Jun 24, 2009, 01:28 PM
+1 i wish all the whiners would stop saying its all made up. too many whiners in macrumors forums...

Not a whiner, just a realist.

SatanLover
Jun 24, 2009, 01:48 PM
Not a whiner, just a realist.

a realist? LMAO. so somebody losing their iphone and using mobile me to find it, then writing a blog about the experience is somehow unfathomable to you? spare me your response. this is my response: ITS A STORY. just because some minor details MAY have been embellished for entertainment purposes doesn't make the experience he had untrue.

steve jr.
Jun 24, 2009, 02:04 PM
I wonder what the outcome will be when someone reports it stolen and they take this feature to the police and say, "Here's my phone! Get it back!"

sibruk
Jun 24, 2009, 02:09 PM
Cali's last episode of GeekBrief.tv was dedicated to covering this story (http://www.geekbrief.tv/gbtv-582-a-bedtime-story). She seemed to know the guy, so I think it's pretty safe to say that the story is true. Give or take maybe a little embellishment here and there (we all do it!).

Jeez, what is wrong with some people, thinking that either everything is a conspiracy or that everyone wants their five minutes of fame?! Pretty sad outlook on life.

Back to the story, it still won't have me shelling out for a MobileMe subscription. Come back to me, Apple, when you offer an affordable monthly subscription, and then maybe...

sixor12
Jun 24, 2009, 02:10 PM
If it had been any other ethnic group other than "white" they might have been challenged but minorities know "you hurt white folk EVERYONE gets it".
Scarier for a "black" man to walk in a "white" neighborhood than other way around.
Just remember sometimes the planets do align and things turn out right.

SatanLover
Jun 24, 2009, 02:18 PM
Jeez, what is wrong with some people, thinking that either everything is a conspiracy or that everyone wants their five minutes of fame?! Pretty sad outlook on life.


Michael Shermer wrote a great book about people like these.. "Why People Believe Weird Things: Pseudoscience, Superstition, and Other Confusions of Our Time" people with fantasy prone personalities tend to believe in all kinds of crap... creationism, 9/11 was perpetrated by our government, supposed government UFO coverups etc etc

walker5467
Jun 24, 2009, 02:21 PM
I call BS on this one, the guy works for apple and was a trainer for tech support on the original iPhone, wants to look cool (totally crappy attitude irl). Props if its true though, lucky you didn't get mugged, Chicago has its nasty parts.

sixor12
Jun 24, 2009, 02:21 PM
you crazy people-
Damn!, NOW I'M CRAZY!!!

casik
Jun 24, 2009, 02:38 PM
Love this story... and for the rest of you who don't have MobileMe... it's so worth it. Find My iPhone, iWeb publishing, the @me.com email... i was on the fence for a few years about getting it, but I finally did... we enjoy the iWeb thing for our family website... It is cheap... it's only like 10$ a month... thats only a few coffees or a night at the movie. Worth it.

DiamondMac
Jun 24, 2009, 05:09 PM
Am I the only one who thinks this sounds a bit too made-up?

I am sure Find My iPhone works this well but I read it and think to myself how good of a story this is right after the release and how easy it is to think people will read this and link to it

fred_garvin
Jun 24, 2009, 05:22 PM
Love this story... and for the rest of you who don't have MobileMe... it's so worth it. Find My iPhone, iWeb publishing, the @me.com email... i was on the fence for a few years about getting it, but I finally did... we enjoy the iWeb thing for our family website... It is cheap... it's only like 10$ a month... thats only a few coffees or a night at the movie. Worth it.

Its less than that. $99 if you let Apple auto renew with your CC each year. $6/month if you just buy boxed mobile me from Amazon for $69. Then signup with the code, never enter your credit card, and make a note in iCal to buy another boxed copy from Amazon 11 months later.

Not sure why an iPhone with mobile safari couldn't use this feature. Haven't tried it myself yet.

GregA
Jun 24, 2009, 05:53 PM
We had to switch off push notification because the phone battery was dying too quickly. I'd like to see "Find my iPhone" check in periodically (eg: hourly or daily) like email does, and if it sees a "Find iPhone" flag it could then display the message and upload it's location.

Note: our iPhone was suffering a bug with the music sync after the initial upgrade, so perhaps it was sucking power for that reason. Will test that this weekend.

Beric
Jun 24, 2009, 05:55 PM
Am I the only one who thinks this sounds a bit too made-up?

I am sure Find My iPhone works this well but I read it and think to myself how good of a story this is right after the release and how easy it is to think people will read this and link to it

Simply because it happened right after release, and there were some fortunate happenings, it must have been made up, eh?

I don't buy it. He had to be fortunate just to get his iPhone back. Remember, you can just turn off the feature if you know about it.

jmaltabes
Jun 24, 2009, 06:24 PM
If I didn't know Kevin, I would have thought is was made up.
However I do know him, and this is the kind of stuff that happens to him.

I'm happy he found his phone.:apple:

crisss1205
Jun 24, 2009, 07:59 PM
Wish it was free!

thearne3
Jun 24, 2009, 08:10 PM
For JB phones, there's Findmyi - don't have to pay for it 'til you need it. Much more stealthy, from what I can tell...

Michael73
Jun 24, 2009, 08:18 PM
I think you guys missed on of the biggest things about this story which just boggles my mind: that you can't use me.com from an iPhone...meaning you can't locate an iPhone from another iPhone. That's idiotic! Apple should fix that.

MrSmith
Jun 24, 2009, 09:06 PM
Lego® ?

*sn igger*

Jelite
Jun 24, 2009, 09:59 PM
Guys, this story has to be true, i mean who would admit to going to a Lego Convention?

lauro
Jun 24, 2009, 11:24 PM
What I found out is that YOU ACTUALLY CAN USE AN IPHONE TO FIND ANOTHER IPHONE... just don't use the SAFARI app, use another browser (I have BOLT - free app) as an alternate browser.... you launch it, go to mobileme website, login etc. just as you would do on any computer...
and I think this is a great way to use the FIND MY iPHONE feature...
Ciao
Lauro

caliguy
Jun 25, 2009, 01:27 AM
"Find My iPhone" wouldn't even be necessary if Apple simply provided a service by which if a phone/ipod is lost or stolen, the owner can report it stolen to apple, and then if the thief or finder attempts to plug it into a computer to sync or restore the device, the serial number is sent to apple, apple realizes it's a stolen device and contacts the appropriate authorities and provides the itunes account name/address. This was discussed before but people have been killed for their devices and I believe if the above was implemented then this would be deterrant enough to not completely eliminate violence against iphone/ipod owners by thieves, but definitely lower it.

Undercover (http://www.orbicule.com/undercover/).

iphones4evry1
Jun 25, 2009, 02:24 AM
This is like Low Jack, except instead of the cops chasing the bad guy, you get to chase him/her yourself. :cool:
If they are smaller than you, have fun. If they are bigger, call the cops for backup.

big_malk
Jun 25, 2009, 03:30 AM
Does Find My iPhone actually use the iPhone's GPS? I've tried it and the circle is always so big I think it just uses cell tower triangulation?
I've never seen it narrow down enough to track it moving on a street.

I want the guy who had the iPhone to write his account, how he thought he had a free iPhone until a group of geeks came running at him with a MacBook :p

macgrl
Jun 25, 2009, 06:05 AM
Guys, this story has to be true, i mean who would admit to going to a Lego Convention?

So true! :)

stevepeck
Jun 25, 2009, 09:22 AM
l wonder if the guy had a lphone made from Lego

ACriticalSpirit
Jun 25, 2009, 09:50 AM
Find my iPhone is a good start, but there's some things that could be better.

1. Password lock on the switch that enables/disables the feature
2. Disable power off and volume changes
3. Is there anything that could be remotely shut off to save battery life? The longer it has charge = the longer it can be tracked.
4. Something to make the phone seem unusable to whoever stole it. A pseudo-Brick my iPhone feature combined with serial number tracking.

Maybe these things are just me. I would appreciate those though. I feel pretty safe about my MBP since I have Undercover and I know that Orbicule has a feature similar to number 4.

pubwvj
Jun 25, 2009, 09:50 AM
I'm glad Apple has finally implemented this sort of thing. I've wanted it for a long time, but not just with the iPhone. Apple should offer this across the board. Almost all hardware is now on the net so this could help greatly reduce theft, catch criminals and return equipment to the rightful owners. Apple should offer an option when you register your hardware to turn on "Find Me". Lots of 3rd parties trying to do this but integrating it deep is the solution. Only the OEM like Apple can do that.

Cheers

-Walter
Sugar Mountain Farm
in the mountains of Vermont
http://SugarMtnFarm.com/blog/
http://HollyGraphicArt.com/
http://NoNAIS.org

DiamondMac
Jun 25, 2009, 12:14 PM
Simply because it happened right after release, and there were some fortunate happenings, it must have been made up, eh?

Knew he would get a lot of blog press? Has his own site? Yes, seems very possible to me.

mac jones
Jun 25, 2009, 05:02 PM
(Seems i remember a flick with Kim Basinger and a cell phone).

Lets's see....race against the clock. shadowy characters in dive bars, sketchy neighborhoods , hi tech pursuit.

I wish I had though of this first :D

diesel
Jun 26, 2009, 05:42 AM
I found an iPhone with an 02 sim card inside. It soon got blocked so i couldn't call any of the owner's contacts so they could help get the owner reunited with the phone. As i could not find the rightful owner i have kept it but i can only listen to music and use some apps. I want it to make calls now.



you serious? Sounds like you made no effort to "reunite" it with the owner. It would only take you a second or two to look up the name of the iphone which most likely is setup with the actual name of the owner, then based on that look at the contacts list and call a few contacts from YOUR own phone to get a hold of the owner. Or just return it to O2, i'm sure they would be able to get it back to the owner.

Ridiculous that you would even post what you did here

big_malk
Jun 26, 2009, 06:00 AM
I like to keep the auto-lock and PIN set so if someone picks up my iPhone they can't mess about with it, either a thief calling expensive numbers or my friends sending inappropriate texts to people for laughs. But, that means if anyone found my iPhone and tried to find my contact details they couldn't, and if I was in some accident or something no one could find an ICE number.
Obviously I can send a number to display via Find my iPhone, but it's still not ideal.

Cousin Dirk
Jun 26, 2009, 07:17 AM
Find my iPhone is a good start, but there's some things that could be better.

1. Password lock on the switch that enables/disables the feature
2. Disable power off and volume changes
3. Is there anything that could be remotely shut off to save battery life? The longer it has charge = the longer it can be tracked.
4. Something to make the phone seem unusable to whoever stole it. A pseudo-Brick my iPhone feature combined with serial number tracking.


I agree with most of those. Maybe point 3 should instead enable a "power save" mode that forces the iPhone to power down everything except what it needs for Find My iPhone to function, to get as much power as it can out of the battery. I also like the idea of being able to remotely brick it... although I think you're a bit nuts if you haven't enabled the passcode lock which kinda covers that.

f7digital
Jun 28, 2009, 12:25 PM
Now it wasn't an iPhone mind you, but I did this! If you are a Sprint customer you may be familiar with their "family locator" service. I've got my 4 kids on the plan and its nice once-in-a while to locate them and assure myself they haven't been kidnapped to Mexico, but are still at their friends house.

Once my daughter's phone was stolen with her back pack right out of class. Over the next few days I tracked it and finally got a fairly accurate hit which narrowed it to an apartment building. (I knew I only had about 6 doors to knock on) And, guess what --nailed it on the 2nd one! Got the phone back!

Why are there so many haters and doubters of the Chicago story? I can totally see it happening. And I'm glad if I ever do lose my iPhone this is possible.

thewhiteness
Jun 29, 2009, 04:05 AM
The most amazing part of this story to me is that there is such a thing as a Lego convention. Getting the iPhone back makes sense. That is exactly what the feature is designed to do.

Er a simple google search reveals http://www.brickworld.us/ held in Chicago, oh cynical one.

Drag'nGT
Jun 29, 2009, 06:50 PM
Phone insurance too much to ask for? :confused:

joro
Jun 30, 2009, 09:35 AM
I agree with most of those. Maybe point 3 should instead enable a "power save" mode that forces the iPhone to power down everything except what it needs for Find My iPhone to function, to get as much power as it can out of the battery. I also like the idea of being able to remotely brick it... although I think you're a bit nuts if you haven't enabled the passcode lock which kinda covers that.

Or an alternative to bricking is doing a remote wipe – while it doesn’t get your phone back at least you don’t have sensitive information out there.

Cousin Dirk
Jul 1, 2009, 12:26 AM
Or an alternative to bricking is doing a remote wipe – while it doesn’t get your phone back at least you don’t have sensitive information out there.

Of course, the problem with that is as soon as you wipe the phone you lose the ability to locate it. It is very much a last resort.