Google's Find My Device Service Adds Indoor Mapping

Google Find my device

Finding your lost Android smartphone in a shopping mall or airport will soon be a little easier, now that Google has updated its Find My Device service to include indoor positioning.

The service can now pinpoint approximately where your lost device is located in major buildings for which Google has obtained the floor plans. This includes transit centers, stadiums, and museums.

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Google InDoor Map

So if you’ve accidentally misplaced your Android phone in a public building, it’s good bet you can find it with Google’s free service. For all other buildings, like your home, you won’t see a detailed floor plan. But through Google’s Find My Device option, you can force your lost device to ring, making it easy to find.

The same service can also let you lock your phone remotely or even erase its contents. Of course, the Android device must be on for this to work.

In the future, newer Android devices might get smarter at pinpointing where they’re located inside a building — even when Google doesn’t have the floor plans. With the Android 9.0 update, the tech giant added a new indoor-positioning feature that can measure a device’s distance relative to nearby Wi-Fi hotspots. However, the technology only works with certain routers, so you probably won’t be using it anytime soon.

For other tips about how to find a lost smartphone, you can see our tips here. Apple users who’ve lost their device can rely on the Find My iPhone app, which can be downloaded over iTunes.


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