Missing/Stolen iPhone 4 - Please help.

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by amitdoc2b, Nov 29, 2010.

  1. amitdoc2b macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2008
    #1
    Hi.

    Today, I am one of those unfortunate iPhone 4 owners to have one missing and possibly stolen since nobody bothered to return it. I was on my way back from the airport to my apartment. I live in a 25-story apartment building, and am 100% sure it is in possession of someone within this building. The reason is because I had it in my hands when I got out of the car when arriving to our apartment tower, and put it in my jacket pocket so that I could grab my luggage from the trunk of the car. When I got to my front door of my apartment on the 14th floor, I noticed my iPhone was no longer in my pocket. I immediately traced back all my steps and could not find it.

    It was my mistake for putting it in a jacket pocket that had no zip. I had a duffle bag on top of a carry-on, and it fell off the carry-on while rolling it... and I feel when I leaned down to put it back on the carry-on when inside waiting for an elevator to my floor, it must have slipped out of my pocket. I never had location services turned off before, but this time I did. My battery was really low from the flight and I just wanted to conserve as much possible to make sure I had enough power for an emergency call on the way if necessary (also had turned off 3G, and lowered brightness).

    I do have MobileMe, but all I could do was send a text message with sound since location services was off. I did this many times throughout the day, and when I call my phone I still hear it ring 3-4 times before it goes my to machine.. so I don't think anyone turned the phone off. I tried to play the MobileMe sound using "find my iPhone" as I retraced my steps but could not find it. It's sad to know that someone in my building has it and I can't do anything about it. I left my info with the Front Desk and the Leasing Office as well. I also left this info via message through MobileMe on my iPhone 4 as well. The phone was on mute/non-vibrate and password protected, but I heard that the sound will still play in this scenario.

    Now.. I need to get another iPhone 4 in case this one does not turn up. I have heard stories that they want full price if you get another one. I had bought mine as a pre-order from Apple back in June. My parents are on a separate family plan and my mom is eligible for an iPhone 4 upgrade for $199 at 16GB. I am not on their family plan, but was wondering if I can receive her upgrade, order the phone online, and have it shipped to me? She is completely okay with it. It's just that I have my own personal plan and a different number with different area code than her.. so not sure how the whole activation process will work since my already-activated micro-sim is also gone with my lost/possibly stolen iPhone 4.

    I live in NY, if that means anything.. while my family (and their family plan) is in Cali.

    Thanks for your help.
     
  2. samcraig macrumors P6

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2009
    #2
    One question...

    If the battery was THAT low that you were jury-rigging to save battery - what makes you think it was still "on" several hours later?

    " My battery was really low from the flight and I just wanted to conserve as much possible to make sure I had enough power for an emergency call on the way if necessary (also had turned off 3G, and lowered brightness). "

    Sorry you lost your phone... but this doesn't add up somehow...

    As for ordering - the account OWNER would need to do the ordering.
     
  3. amitdoc2b thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2008
    #3
    Sorry for the confusion, yes it doesn't add up because it was hard for me to type the whole experience as I recollected it.. The battery was low while I was at the airport waiting for my roommate to pick me up and needed to save some juice for an emergency call. As soon as he picked me up, I used his car charger to charge the phone on the trip back and proceeded to play with my phone. I never returned all the settings back to normal though since I got busy talking to him and what not. I never imagined I would lose it like that. The phone was on airplane mode in the plane and I watched many movies along the way and that drained the battery. It got low, so while at the airport I did the typical things to save some battery life till I had access to an outlet (his car charger). Hope that helps. Still looking for answers to my questions though? Thanks..
     
  4. bradl macrumors 68040

    bradl

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2008
    #4
    Not too fast there..

    You can still locate your phone (read: general vicinity) with Find My iPhone and/or MobileMe. So if someone decides to charge it/use it, etc., you still have a way to get to it.

    You didn't mention that. That's not good. And I don't know of an airport nowadays that doesn't have outlets or a charging station outright... But leaving it in Airplane mode after you've left the plane isn't really good.

    BL.
     
  5. iggypod macrumors 6502a

    iggypod

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2010
    #5
    Did you attempt to find the general area its at via the find my iPhone app?
     
  6. amitdoc2b, Nov 30, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 30, 2010

    amitdoc2b thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2008
    #6
    I did but the location services is not activated. Yeah, airports have outlets but I was waiting outside of it for my ride. All this makes sense in hindsight, but it's not like I expected to lose it... nor did I know where exactly my roommate was outside the airport, so I was waiting for him outside. I know for a fact its someone in my building (or their guests) that 'kept' the iPhone because I lost it in between the building's gated parking lot and my apartment room, but its a 25-story building.

    What I really need to know now is the answers to my questions so that I can move and get a new phone since I am currently iPhone-less for the first time since 2007 (I have bought every generation on day 1).

    I wanted to mention that it was NOT in airplane mode when it went missing. I changed it from airplane mode back to Edge, but deactivated 3G, deactivated Location Services, and decreased brightness so that I could save some battery 'in case' I needed it while waiting for my roommate outside the airport.

    It's unfortunate and am not on here to curse the person that found the phone and decided to keep it, just want the answers to my questions in the original post so that I can move on and get a new iPhone 4 at $199 since I am currently phone-less.
     
  7. spikefood, Nov 30, 2010
    Last edited: Nov 30, 2010

    spikefood macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2008
    #7
    Have your mom order the iPhone 4 from AT&T on their website and designate the delivery address as yours. Once the phone comes you can just open it and activate it on iTunes like you would normally (or at least how it used to be before in store activation). This should work considering AT&T wouldn't know the difference. However, if she is not currently on an iPhone plan or similar data plan then there could be a small issue with her being charged for that service. As with any smart phone sold now, you must have a data plan with it. If she had a regular phone before with no plan then that would change.

    Pretty sure I'm right, anyone please correct me if I am wrong.

    Edit: Also would like to note it's a shame someone would steal your phone like that. Considering you even live within a gated building. Finding some random thing in a building, such as $20 may be easy to pocket, however when someone steals a phone they are stealing from a person directly. Sure I might be able to find out whose random $20 I picked up was but its harder when its a faceless act. But to take a phone is taking from a single person. I sincerely hope you find your phone or that it gets returned, especially since it looks like you converted yours to white. May have been why they were so eager to take it and not report it.
     
  8. dave006 macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2008
    #8
    Did you happen to login and see if any calls have been made to or from your phone? Also, did you call and report the phone lost and have the SIM deactivated? This one is tricky since you are still trying to see if you can find it. Once the SIM is dead you will be out of luck.

    Caution, if you open the new iPhone that was ordered against your mom's line as an "Upgrade" and if you activate it at home in NYC using the basic instructions, it will have to be on your mom's line and her current SIM will be killed and she will be without cell service. It would be best to arrange for her to go to an AT&T store at the same time as you. You in NYC and her in CA.


    This means that you should try to do a manual activation and it still has some risks if the Care rep or the store makes any mistakes along the way but in-store is safer since they can provide your mom a replacement SIM and you a new replacement micro-SIM if the rep makes any mistakes in the activation steps.

    The key is that your mom's contract terms have to be agreed to and her contract term changed and then once that is done, AT&T does not care if she gives the iPhone away. Also if she does not currently have a data plan it will be added based on the online order and she need to call in and provide the IMEI of her 'real' phone to remove the iPhone data plan.

    Dave
     
  9. amitdoc2b thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2008
    #9
    Thank you for your response. Actually, it was a Black 16GB. The signature is wrong.. I had written that because I originally planned to own a white iPhone but it never released. I'll have to update the sig. No problem having mom's upgrade sent to me, but I have a couple questions..

    1. She currently does not use a phone that requires a data plan, so I understand she would be charged for the data plan if activated. But once its activated under her number, can I go to an AT&T store and ask for them to give me a SIM with my original number so that I can put it in her phone?

    2. Will AT&T give me any problems if they check that this is not the original phone I purchased (but rather my mom purchased) even though she gave it as a gift to me?

    3. How can I deactivate her number associated to iPhone 4 after I get a new SIM from AT&T put in it with my original number? I basically want to get her back to her non-data cell phone she had been using and me using her iPhone under my own original number.

    4. Will she be able to return back to her non-data plan after the iPhone is reactivated back with my number, and she is back to her old non-data phone? I assume the only thing she loses in all this is her upgrade eligibility for another 18 months, and maybe a $30 activation fee or whatever they charge.. ?
     
  10. amitdoc2b thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2008
    #10
    I logged in and don't see any calls made, but that's probably because I had it password protected. I am giving it up till tomorrow for someone to return it to the front desk at my complex before I report it missing or deactivate my micro-sim. My mom does not use her non-data phone much, so it will not be drastic for her to get her old SIM activated immediately in case it dies when activating the new micro-SIM in the iPhone. She gave me her log-in info so I can reroute the upgraded iPhone to me in NY if I decide to do so. I asked 4 questions above this post because I think I typed it while you were responding at the same time.. to add to the questions.. will the IMEI need to really be called in for her old flip phone or could I just change the option online on her account to remove data from her phone once her old phone is reactivated and the new iPhone is under my original number again?
     
  11. Interstella5555 macrumors 603

    Interstella5555

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2008
    #11
    Hope you find it...On the replacement pricing side, I had my stolen about a month ago and my girlfriends mom bought me a replacement when I was out visiting a couple weeks ago. We had to go to an AT&T store, and I told them I was replacing a stolen 32 GB. The guy gave it to me for $499 without me asking for a discount, so $200 off, but they've been treating me pretty nice recently (free SIM replacement when I had to switch back to my 2G between 4s); guess that 6 years of service is starting to pay off.
     
  12. Dhelsdon macrumors 65816

    Dhelsdon

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2010
    Location:
    Canadian Eh!
    #12
    Sorry to hear you lost your phone, I recently went through a similar situation. My girlfriend had been using my iPod Touch 4G and lost it at school. To my dismay I didn't have the tracker app on the ipod, so I was absolutely out of luck, but she replaced it the next day because I was so upset.

    I've since learned my lesson about keeping all apps updated and on my iDevices. I hope you get all this sorted out and figured the way you need it.

    Did you think about talking to your landlord after it happened?

    Most newer apartment buildings have cameras down every hallway and in every elevator. Maybe if your lucky you could view the tapes and see if you can find exactly where you lost it, and where it was later picked up - and by whom.
     
  13. Interstella5555 macrumors 603

    Interstella5555

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    Jun 30, 2008
    #13
    I do hope the OP finds their phone, but this is probably illegal, and I would sue my landlord if they allowed someone to do this without a warrant.
     
  14. Dhelsdon macrumors 65816

    Dhelsdon

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    Canadian Eh!
    #14
    Why would it be illegal? I understand maybe the elevator but even in hallways?
     
  15. amitdoc2b thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2008
    #15
    UPDATE!!

    After nagging whomever had the phone all day and night with MobileME sound messages, someone anonymously left it at our front desk downstairs this morning. They didn't even say anything to the person at the front desk, just simply left it on the counter. The person at the front desk looked at the screen and saw my MobileME message with name, apartment number, e-mail, and roommate's contact number. He immediately called and I went down to grab it. The phone's front screen was completely destroyed, but the back and bezel were perfect.. so I am thinking that it fell out of my pocket face first. But the phone is completely functional. Nonetheless, atleast having the phone back in one piece allowed me to make an out-of-warantee exchange with Apple for $199. They are overnighting me a new phone that I should receive tomorrow. This takes away the worries or hassle of having to do some complication phone switching and ruining my mother's upgrade or adding $15 to her monthly bill. Thank you all for reading my story, posting your comments, and suggestions. I really appreciate it.
     
  16. Interstella5555 macrumors 603

    Interstella5555

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2008
    #16
    Sorry for side jacking the thread, but even in the hallways you're violating the privacy of the residents by letting some random resident view the security tapes.
     
  17. ClutchThese macrumors 65816

    ClutchThese

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2010
    Location:
    Alexandria, VA
    #17
    wrong. Theyre are in the "public area''. In these areas anyone can do as they please. If the appartment want to allow another resident to view a tape, so be it. There is no legal difference between the person sitting behind the counter and the resident. Most of the time the person sitting behind the counter is a resident. So the desk person allowing him to view the tapes is completely fine.

    Someone always has to say "i'll sue you!!!!"
     
  18. APtalent macrumors regular

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    Jun 5, 2010
    #18
    Lucky. I would've smashed the living hell out of it and left it on the desk.
     
  19. iggypod macrumors 6502a

    iggypod

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    Jun 23, 2010
    #19
    All things considered, that ended pretty well. Cheers!
     
  20. pauldolling macrumors newbie

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    Nov 6, 2010
    #20
    Why would you do that??:mad:
     
  21. STravisC macrumors regular

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    Nov 11, 2010
    #21
    It would teach em not to steal/find phone and not return them right away.
     
  22. amitdoc2b thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Feb 25, 2008
    #22
    For off-warrantee-exchanges, when they say the iPhone has to be in one piece, do they mean the body of the phone or the entire phone? Considering the screen is shattered, there's billions of pieces! Either way, these pieces are still being held together by the $1 6-pack of Hong Kong screen protectors I bought on eBay a few months back and still functional despite the mess. Yeah, it wasn't the best ending seeing it all broken like that, but it was still better than not getting the phone back at all. I am pretty sure it broke because it fell out of my pocket face first, rather than the person who found it breaking it.. That'd wouldn't really make much sense I think.
     
  23. Consultant macrumors G5

    Consultant

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    Jun 27, 2007
    #23
    Congrats for getting your phone back. You might want to update first post.
     
  24. Dhelsdon macrumors 65816

    Dhelsdon

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    Location:
    Canadian Eh!
    #24
    That's what I thought too, seemed odd to me that even a hallway would be considered a 'privacy breach' or whatever. Even if the resident got the landlord to view, that shouldn't be illegal.
     

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