24
Aug
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Utilizing the same phone-centric implementation that we've just covered with PhoneLocator, Where's My Droid by alienmanfc6 is a light-weight, free security app that promises to help you recover your lost Android device.

At A Glance

As with most other security apps, Where's My Droid sets up with ease, asking only your name and zip code, and automatically using the email address of the Google account connected with your device. Likewise, WMD uses your Google account to push information to your phone once it receives an SMS containing a keyword for the desired command. The implementation of ads into the app was off-putting at first, but it's no hassle to bypass them with a single button press.

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Where's My Droid has a very limited selection of features, but this may be a plus for users who prefer a no-frills experience when tracking down their lost phone. Since WMD focuses only on location and alarm functionality, it seems more geared toward the user who is prone to losing their handset around the house, rather than the user concerned about loss and theft in a larger area.

Features

First up is the alarm feature. When the keyword is sent via SMS to your phone it triggers a full volume alarm. The user can choose for the device to vibrate, ring, or both, with an added option of "white noise siren" which "makes it easier to hear the location of your phone than a normal ringtone." WMD also includes the convenient option of automatically returning your phone's volume to normal after the alarm is deactivated. The alarm works exactly as expected, triggering a flurry of ringtones and noises and a screen with a "found phone!!" button to deactivate the alarm. The other button is an inexplicable ad and a "Donate" button, which is the last thing on my mind when my phone is making tons of noise.

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Next (and finally) is the GPS function, which also works beautifully. Sending the key phrase to your phone will return an SMS containing GPS coordinates, an approximate address, and a link to Google Maps. Unfortunately the app does not switch on GPS automatically, so you'll need to make sure GPS is always activated if you feel a loss or theft coming on.

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Final Thoughts

Where's My Droid is an extremely lightweight app. I get the impression that it isn't meant to help if your device is stolen, except in the very basic way of locating your phone via GPS. Despite this and the continual appearance of advertisements, it works exactly as it should for what it does.

Pros

  • Price - Where's My Droid is absolutely free, with the option to buy it for $1.00 from the market as a donation to the developer.
  • Lightweight - If you're just worried about losing your phone in between the couch cushions, this app doesn't pack on any features you don't need.
  • Ease of Use - The app is exceedingly straightforward in execution and operation.

Cons

  • Very Few Features - Again this app provides only the most basic functionality for finding a lost phone.
  • No Tablet Support - Since tablets cannot receive SMS messages, you will need another solution to find your lost device.
  • Conspicuous/Vulnerable - If you do plan on using this as a security solution, it can easily be uninstalled using the same process as any app.

Overall Where's My Droid is limited., but that may not be a bad thing. It provides alarm functionality for when your phone may be lost around the house or in a smaller public area, and GPS options just in case it slips away. For someone concerned with remotely protecting their data and having a high chance of recovering their device should it be stolen however, WMD is not a viable solution.

Liam Spradlin
Liam loves Android, design, user experience, and travel. He doesn't love ill-proportioned letter forms, advertisements made entirely of stock photography, and writing biographical snippets.

  • nwpsys

    Is there going to be a final round-up post summarising the shoot-out apps with a conclusion ?

    It's just I have a general Android security question / comment and that seemed like the best place for me to post it.

    nwpsys

  • kevin robert

    Please find and alarm my android for me..

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