How to Set Up Find My iPhone

* This post is part of iPhone Life's Tip of the Day newsletter. . *

With Find My iPhone, you don’t have to worry as much about losing your phone. Here’s how to set up and use Find My iPhone. It’s easy to set up, and once it's enabled, you will be able to see the location of all your devices right there on the map view. You can even take steps to locate your iPhone if it's dead or offline. The best part of Find My iPhone is being able to see where your iPhone, iPad, and Mac are from any of your devices. That means if you've lost your iPhone, you can find its location from your computer. 

Related: How to Find Your iPhone Even If It’s Dead (with & without Find My iPhone)

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How to Set Up Find My iPhone

  • If you don’t already have it downloaded, download the Find My iPhone app from the App Store.

  • Open the app.

  • Sign in with your Apple ID. (Here's what to do if you forgot your Apple ID)

  • The app will locate your devices, then show you a map with the list of your devices that are set up with Find My iPhone.

  • If your devices are powered off and not connected to the internet, you will not be shown a map but can still choose the options Play Sound and Lost Mode, which will activate when the devices are turned on and connect to the internet.

    • For Find My iPhone to work across all of your devices, make sure you’re signed into iCloud and have Find My iPhone (or iPad, Mac, etc) turned on. You can check this on iPhone or iPad by opening the Settings app, selecting iCloud, and making sure Find My iPhone is toggled on. If you have an iCloud family, you can also see the locations of any of your family member's registered devices.

 

  • From here, you can tap on an individual device’s name. Then select Actions. This will allow you to:

    • Play Sound, which is handy if you can’t find your device within your own home. 

    • Turn on Lost Mode, which makes your Lock screen a place to display information for anyone who finds your iPhone to contact you.

    • Or, Erase iPhone, which you can use if you’ve lost your iPhone for good but don’t want your information to be found or if you forgot to wipe your phone before selling it.

  • Tap the car icon to open Apple Maps directions to your device's location. This is helpful when you think you left your device at a friend's house or dropped it in a public place like a park. If you think your device has been stolen, contact authorities and do not try to retrieve your device on your own. 

With Find My iPhone, you'll have options for a course of action and be less stressed if you lose your device.

Top Image Credit: GongTo / Shutterstock

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Abbey Dufoe's picture

Abbey Dufoe is a freelance writer and a web producer at a nonprofit based in Princeton, NJ. She's always itching for the newest iOS gadget (current favorite - the Apple Watch). She tweets and blogs about the earth and the Internet on Twitter at @abbeydufoe and at abbeydufoe.com.