Find iOS Device More Than 24 Hours Later?

Discussion in 'iOS 8' started by evangw, Mar 16, 2015.

  1. evangw macrumors regular

    Feb 9, 2008
    Since iOS 8, there's been a feature on iDevices that sends the last known position to Apple, but is there any way to actually recover this yourself and find where a device has gone to?

    iCloud still seems to report only a maximum of 24 hours later, which seems bizarrely low. Clearly there's data -somewhere- on the device's last known location, but it's not user accessible? Can you email Apple or something to find this? All I can find when googling this is that "we don't know how it works", finding Mac Rumors articles and other places that reposted it.
  2. Weaselboy Moderator


    Staff Member

    Jan 23, 2005
    If you have Find my Phone turned on, you can login to your account at and see where the phone is, assuming it is turned on.
  3. evangw thread starter macrumors regular

    Feb 9, 2008
    Right, but I'm asking for "more than 24 hours later" after its last check-in. Are the data on where your phone/whatever completely obliterated or something? So if you have a phone that was on, but ran out of battery, and you look for it on a Monday when you left for the weekend, then for some reason you can't find out whether it's in your car, house, or if you forgot it on vacation, even though they seem to actually have that information and it would have been visible if you'd checked faster. It seems incredibly unlikely they actually purge the old data but I can't find any way to access it, even by a request form to Apple.
  4. doerrmann macrumors member

    Jul 11, 2008
    The Find My iDevice feature doesn't constantly track the device - it locates the devices when the owner logs in to another device or iCloud and attempts to find the device. The "send last location" feature will do so when the battery is critically low. This assures that if the device is lost and the battery dies before the owner logs in to find it, you'll see where it was right before the device shuts down, assuming it has a connection.


    Just saw your response - I seem to have misunderstood your first message.

    How do you know that the location is displayed for only 24 hours? I haven't seen that documented anywhere. It's also possible that the last active search may disappear after a certain time, but the "send last location" feature will be shown longer...
  5. sbailey4 macrumors 68040


    Dec 5, 2011
    From Apple iCloud document

    ◾If Find My iPhone can’t locate the device, the last known location is displayed for up to 24 hours. Select “Notify me when found” to get an email when it comes online.
  6. technosix macrumors 6502a

    Jan 13, 2015
    West Coast USA
    While it sounds compelling and clever I have no interest in where my stolen iPhone may be.

    I've been extremely lucky to have only one iPhone stolen from me.

    While enjoying a beverage in Starbucks in the Financial district of San Francisco mid day, a thief ran in and grabbed about four phones that were within inches of us laying on our table tops. It happened so fast their was no time to react.

    I simply pulled my MBA out of its bag, logged in and wiped everything off my phone. Sent an email to my homeowners insurance to request reimbursement and walked two stores down to AT&T for a new one.

    Keeping mine pristine there's no way I way I wanted it back after it was molested... :)
  7. perkedel macrumors 6502a


    Dec 30, 2014
    You mean like tracking where a spouse has been? :D
    I haven't seen that ability from the iPhone. You'd probably get a better luck with one of those gps running watch.
  8. evangw thread starter macrumors regular

    Feb 9, 2008

    It's not useful for a stolen device or tracking someone, which in any case the tracking feature would be for a device that is -currently active- and would be pretty much useless for a device that's been offline for 4 days.

    This is like an actual feature in standard iOS8, I'm not coming up with something out of the blue here:

    What is the point of sending the last location to Apple if it's not possible to actually RECOVER that location? The "notify me when found" is not the same thing, and that's been around for quite a while. I'm looking for a device that will probably never come back online, because it's probably stuck between the mattresses of the kids' room of an apartment somewhere, and iOS8 seems to have explicitly introduced a feature that would help with this.
  9. GreyOS macrumors 68040


    Apr 12, 2012
    Well you seem pretty happy with the answers you've researched independently, I'm sure anyone else here will be able to help you. If you can't find a way to access the location after 24 hours there probably isn't a way, eh? Your best bet is to contact Apple directly about this.

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8 March 16, 2015