Find My iPhone and iPad.

Discussion in 'iPad' started by Silverbird0000, Aug 25, 2010.

  1. Silverbird0000 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2006
    Location:
    Fort Myers, FL
    #1
    I have an iPad 3G and and iPhone 4. I also have MobileMe. My question is this... When I use find my iPhone it will only find the iPad when I'm on wifi. I have not activated the 3G service because I tether my iPhone using MyWi. Is there anyway to make to iPad findable when it has 3G signal, but I don't have a 3G data plan?
     
  2. nixiemaiden macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2010
    Location:
    Daytona Beach
    #2
    Try it out. Leave your iPad at home with wifi turned off and when you are out, try it on your iphone and see if it can locate it. I'm not sure if it needs internet access to transmit the GPS signal back.
     
  3. Silverbird0000 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2006
    Location:
    Fort Myers, FL
    #3
    I tried it while I was at home. I turned the wifi off and tried locating it from Mac. It finds the iPhone, but the iPad shows a red dot next to it. I would think the GPS should still work without a data connection.
     
  4. jsm4182 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2006
    Location:
    Beacon, NY
    #4
    That makes sense. The GPS means it can find itself but no data connection means it can't communicate with mobileme to send its location.
     
  5. poloponies macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    May 3, 2010
    #5
    The "Find My" function requires active 3G. If you think about it, it's essentially useless without 3G. The iPad can't automatically log itself onto a WiFi network (that it hasn't already been logged onto), so even if it could somehow work on WiFi, the iPad would not only need to be in range of WiFi but it would have to somehow seek out the network.
     
  6. Silverbird0000 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2006
    Location:
    Fort Myers, FL
    #6
    This really sucks. One of the main reasons I went with iPad 3G was for the find my iPhone capability. I also got it because if I upgraded my iPhone in the future and don't have MyWi I could still just pop my iPhone sim into iPad for a data connection.
     
  7. dacreativeguy macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2007
    #7
    A WIFI only ipad *would* work if someone used the ipad without either restoring the device or deleting the mobileme account. The problem is that it seems like Find my iphone is only an on-demand service. It doesn't report the last reported location. So you would have to watch your screen constantly in the hopes that your device would connect and report its location.
     
  8. b.c. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2008
    #8
    your observation that your iPad can't be located in such case makes sense. the iPad has a GPS receiver, it doesn't transmit the iPad's location information via GPS. it needs some kind of network connection to do that.

    so turn off WiFi and 3G, and even if the iPad's GPS receiver knows where it is locally, there's no way to communicate that to the remote Find My iPhone service until you re-establish network connection.
     
  9. Silverbird0000 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2006
    Location:
    Fort Myers, FL
    #9
    Ok. I understand. Thanks! I was hoping maybe there was away around that and to make it work without signing up for 3G service. I'm contemplating exchanging my 16GB WiFi + 3G for a 32gb WiFi only model. But I like knowing I can have a 3G data connection if I need it.
     
  10. b.c. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2008
    #10
    the above statement is not correct.

    if you have WiFi and 3G turned off and try to use Find My iPhone, the service says your iPad can't be located (as expected).

    If you then turn on WiFi only, and do any kind of network access on the iPad - e.g. browse a webpage - it will take a few minutes, but then your iPad will show up on Find My iPhone. this is of course assuming your iPad is associated with your Mobile Me account already.

    I just tested this with my 3G iPad (3G is turned off, and I don't have a current data plan enabled anyhow). Find My iPhone could locate my iPad's location correctly once I established a WiFi connection.

    p.s. another poster mentioned that Find My iPhone doesn't report the last known connection. this is also not entirely true.

    it seems if your iPad was online and located by Find my iPhone, then goes offline - your last location is remembered (for how long, I'm not clear). Again, I just tested this - after disabling my iPad's network connection and relaunching Find My iPhone, after several minutes of searching it fails to connect, shows the red dot, but still shows the last location on the map and how many minutes it's been since last located (now about 30min in my test). Maybe the last location will be lost after a longer period being offline, I've never checked that...

    UPDATE: with additional observations

    Find My iPhone remembers the last known location, at least as long as the next day (haven't tried longer)

    but here's another interesting thing I noticed:
    1. at home, after being located by Find My iPhone, then going out of WiFi range (3G off, not connected to any known WiFi router), then iPad gone to sleep...
    2. next day, go to work, iPad still asleep in briefcase, no WiFi routers online that the iPad can connect to...
    3. Find My iPhone reports last known location (at home, 10 hrs ago)
    4. now, power up an AP Express WiFi router the iPad has previously connected to, and with iPad STILL ASLEEP...
    5. re-run Find My iPhone - and now the iPad is correctly located at it's new location

    note: the iPad's location was found while still asleep - just that it was in range of a previously known wifi router

    I wonder if this would work if a sleeping iPad was brought in range of an unlocked but previously unknown WiFi hotspot? ...
     
  11. wackymacky macrumors 68000

    wackymacky

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2007
    Location:
    38°39′20″N 27°13′10″W
    #11
    So how does this work?

    If you have find my iDevice turned on does it automaticlly update mobileme server with your location when you use the web without a request being sent to it to do so?
     
  12. b.c. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2008
    #12
    on the iPad, in Settings, under Mail, Contact and Calendars, if you have a Mobile Me account, there's a switch to enable Find My iPhone.

    I assume the way this works is simply whenever you have a network connection (either Wifi or 3G), by having this setting enabled your iPad periodically sends location data over the network to your Mobile Me account.

    it's really no different than your other Mobile Me account data (mail, calendars, contacts) being periodically synced with the remote Mobile Me servers. it all happens in the background without you doing anything, as long as you have a network connection. works great.
     

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