Cell phone locators

 

Misplacing a cell phone can be traumatic, even if you aren't a drunken Apple engineer with a prototype iPhone at a German beer garden . Losing the device itself is bad enough, but there's a good chance that you'll lose your contacts and text messages, since they're not backed up anywhere—particularly if it's a regular cell phone. BlackBerrys, iPhones, and other smartphones may also have your private information stored in their apps. Replacement cost is another issue. Walk into a carrier retail outlet to buy a new one, and you'll likely have to pay full list price, though you can also buy used phones from eBay.

So what should you do now, while you still have the phone in your possession? Cell phone insurance is an option, but not a particularly good one. It does nothing to retrieve your lost data. Many high-end phones aren't covered at all. The monthly fees can top $100 over the course of two years. Try and cash in, and you'll need to pay a $50 deductible plus shipping. You'll also have to wait several days without a phone.

Fortunately, there are numerous ways you can locate a lost cell phone. Almost all require that you sign up for something beforehand, so start preparing now. Let's step through all the options.

Cell phone locators

We noticed you are using an ad blocker . We understand that you may have many reasons for blocking our advertisers. At the same time, we need to keep the lights on here, so we can keep bringing you great content. This promotional consideration by Microsoft allows us to avoid tactics that we aren't totally comfortable with, like blocking our content.

We trust much of our lives to our mobile devices, whether smartphones or tablets or a traditional notebook computers. But what do you do if one of these devices is lost or stolen?

It’s not an idle concern: a new survey from NQ Mobile finds one in four mobile users have lost their devices or had one stolen, and the Pew internet & American Life Project puts the number closer to one in three . Sure, we know we need to make regular backups and that we ought to set passcodes on our devices. And sure, most of our apps and purchased media can eventually be downloaded and re-installed. However, restoring our stuff can take forever on top of the sheer cost of replacement devices. There’s also the uncomfortable thought of someone going through our email, photos, or social networking accounts — and maybe even posting in our names or deleting accounts.

Misplacing a cell phone can be traumatic, even if you aren't a drunken Apple engineer with a prototype iPhone at a German beer garden . Losing the device itself is bad enough, but there's a good chance that you'll lose your contacts and text messages, since they're not backed up anywhere—particularly if it's a regular cell phone. BlackBerrys, iPhones, and other smartphones may also have your private information stored in their apps. Replacement cost is another issue. Walk into a carrier retail outlet to buy a new one, and you'll likely have to pay full list price, though you can also buy used phones from eBay.

So what should you do now, while you still have the phone in your possession? Cell phone insurance is an option, but not a particularly good one. It does nothing to retrieve your lost data. Many high-end phones aren't covered at all. The monthly fees can top $100 over the course of two years. Try and cash in, and you'll need to pay a $50 deductible plus shipping. You'll also have to wait several days without a phone.

Fortunately, there are numerous ways you can locate a lost cell phone. Almost all require that you sign up for something beforehand, so start preparing now. Let's step through all the options.

Our new search experience requires JavaScript to be enabled. Please enable JavaScript on your browser , then try again .

This product from Garmin was designed to track hunting dogs that might get lost in dense brush or run astray in search of a downed bird. It works well around the neighborhood but is expensive. (see picture at top of page)

The collar is also big and bulky for a small dog although you may laugh when you see your small dog running around with an antenna sticking up from his collar.

If you're a Garmin fan and your dog is an escape artist or you live nearby wild areas, this might be a good but expensive choice. If you take your dog hiking or camping in remote areas, this also is a good choice. Garmin is noted for both its high quality and its excellent customer service.