How to Locate a Lost Cell Phone that is Turned off

Losing the cell phone is a nightmare scenario as it is the primary device used by most of us. It can contain private information such as social media, banking information, and much more that you cannot afford to be misused.

If you have lost your phone, don’t panic. Both Android and iPhones have tools that can find the location of your phone. However, if your phone is turned off, things can get complicated, especially for those with an Android phone. This article will tell you how to locate a lost cell phone even when it’s dead.

Things to do Immediately After Realizing you Lost your Cell Phone

The following can be adapted irrespective of what smartphone you use and your network provider.

  • Step 1: Ask a person nearby, to give you a call to your phone. If you can hear it ring, you will know that it is not too far. 
  • Step 2: If you can’t hear your cell phone ringing, get yourself to a trustworthy person immediately and change all your Google and social media passwords via their computer or smartphone.
  • This will prevent others from accessing the personal and sensitive information in your lost phone.
  • Step 3: If you have set text messages to display on the home screen, text your mobile phone providing instructions on how to reach you. This can help you get back your phone, just in case someone benevolent finds it.
  • Step 4: If you suspect your Phone has been stolen, Report a missing device complaint to the local law enforcement authorities. Do not attempt to recover it by yourself.

Once these immediate measures are taken, let’s look on to find out how you can find your lost cell phone yourself. it is to note that both iPhone and android phones have different tools and procedures in finding out a lost phone. Hence in this article we will provide you with information regarding both.

How to Find Your iPhone Even If It’s Offline 

If you’ve lost your iPhone and it’s completely out of battery or not connected to Wifi or cellular network, you can still find out where it is and here’s all you need to do it.

Set Up the Find My App

You must have the Find My iPhone enabled to make sure that even a switched off iPhone can be found with the help iCloud location tracking. There are lots of ways to locate your missing device as long as your Find My options are fully enabled.

To enable it follow the steps:

  • Step 1: Open Settings app.
  • Step 2: Tap on your profile at the top.
  • Step 3: Select Find My option.
  • Step 4: Toggle on Share My Location if you wish to share your iPhone’s location with certain family members or friends.
  • Step 5: Select Find My iPhone.
  • Step 6: Toggle on Find My iPhone.
  • Step 7: Toggle on Find my network if you wish to find your device even when it’s offline.
  • Step 8: Toggle on Send Last Location to have the location of your device sent to Apple when the battery is low.

Note: If you want to be able to find your lost device on a map, make sure that Location Services is turned on. You can get it enabled by going to Settings > Privacy > Location Services, and then turning on Location Services.

How to Find Your iPhone (Even If It’s Dead or Offline) with Your iPad

If your iPhone is switched off, you will be directed to the last place your iPhone was located before the battery died. If your iPhone is offline but not switched off, then the Find My app will locate the iPhone current position using nearby Apple devices.

To find your lost iPhone on an iPad (even if it’s dead):

  • Step 1: Open Find My app on an iPad.
  • Step 2: Tap on Devices tab.
  • Step 3: A map will pop up with featuring your Find My enabled devices.
  • Step 4: If your iPhone is switched off, it is indicated by an iPhone with a blank screen, both on the map and sidebar.
  • Step 5: If your iPhone is switched on, it is indicated by an iPhone with an active Home screen, both on the map and sidebar.
  • Step 6: Select your iPhone from the list of devices shown.
  • Step 7: Select Directions to get driving or walking directions to your iPhone’s location.
  • Step 8: If the iPhone is offline, but not dead, you can select Play Sound to help you locate your iPhone, provided you have reached the location.
  • Step 9: If the iPhone is dead, you can toggle on Notify When Found to send notifications and a location update to your iPad the next time your iPhone is turned on.

How to Find Your iPhone using Someone Else’s Device

You can find your lost iPhone by logging into your device in your friend’s iPhone. When using a different iPhone linked to someone else’s Apple ID, don’t sign out from their ID in Settings. Use the Me tab in the Find My app to log in remotely.

Here’s how to use someone else’s Apple Device to find your lost iPhone:

  • Step 1: Open Find My app on your friend’s iPhone.
  • Step 2: Tap on the Me tab.
  • Step 3: Tap Help A Friend.
  • Step 4: You have to log into iCloud. If you are prompted to log in using Touch or Face ID, select Use Different Apple ID.
  • Step 5: Log in using your iCloud ID and password.
  • Step 6: When prompted to save your password, select Not Now.
  • Step 7: You can now follow the steps in the previous section to locate your missing iPhone.
  • Step 8: When you have finished, tap your name on the top right of your friend’s iPhone in their Find My app.
  • Step 9: Select Sign Out.

How to Find Your iPhone (Even If It’s Dead or Offline) on a Computer

Most people end up looking for their lost and potentially dead iPhone on the computer. The Find My app is called Find My iPhone when you log on to using your PC or Mac. If you need to track your iPhone using Find My iPhone app from a laptop or desktop web browser,

Follow the steps below:

  • Step 1: Open a browser and go to Alternatively, you can open the Find My app on your computer.
  • Step 2: Sign in using your Apple ID and password if using, else Click the Find iPhone app icon.
  • Step 3: Select All Devices at the top and choose your missing iPhone.
  • Step 4: The map will display where your lost iPhone is located.​

How to Enable Lost Mode

When you use the Find My app to locate your lost iPhone, you will see an option called Mark as Lost. When enabled, Mark As Lost will remotely lock your device and will display a custom message with a phone number where you can be reached.

Your Apple Pay and most notifications will be disabled, although your phone still can receive calls and Face Time messages. This mode also turns on your location services remotely, so that you can locate your device in the Find My app.

Mark As Lost feature requires that your iPhone to be powered. If your iPhone is switched off, you can still enable Mark As Lost, but the mode will only be engaged when your iPhone powered back up and connects to the internet or Bluetooth. If you suspect your iPhone is still powered, you can try using Mark As Lost.

To do so follow the steps below:

  • Step 1: Open the Find My app on your iPad or any device you are using to locate your lost phone.
  • Step 2: Select your lost device from the displayed list of devices.
  • Step 3: Under Mark As Lost, tap on Activate and then Continue
  • Step 4: Enter a phone number through which you can be reached in case someone finds your lost iPhone.
  • Step 5: Tap Next.
  • Step 6: Enter a message to be displayed on the Lock screen.
  • Step 7: Tap Activate.

Does Find My Work With 3rd-Party Devices?

Until now, the Find My network only worked with Apple devices. Apple is opening up its Find My network to third-party apps and devices. Users can use the Find My network to locate Find My network-enabled third-party devices, offering this helpful resource to more than just Apple device users.

This is expected to be available by the end of the year, but it will be up to each company to adopt this feature, so it may not be available on every Bluetooth-capable device.

Locate Your Lost iPhone using Google Maps

What If I Haven’t Enabled Find My iPhone? How to Find Your iPhone Using Google Maps

Unfortunately, if you don’t have Find My iPhone enabled, you will can trace your phone, provided you’ve enabled location history for Google Maps. Location history in Google maps will be able to tell you the last location of your lost iPhone. If you haven’t enabled location history for Google Maps, it is a good idea to get it enabled, in case you lose the phone in the future. 

  • Step 1: Browse to
  • Step 2: Make sure you are logged into your Google account.
  • Step 3: Select the date your iPhone went missing.
  • Step 4: Check your last location and go get that phone!

If there’s no chance of getting your iPhone back, the following things are to be done in order to keep your data from getting into the wrong hands.

Erase Data From your Lost iPhone

Once you confirm that your iPhone was stolen, it is a must to erase your iPhone’s data. Many users have their credit cards saved with Apple Pay. Erasing all data on your lost iPhone is an important step that one should not skip.

  • Step 1: Sign into the Find My app. You can use a friend’s phone or another device to do this, just make sure to sign in using your Apple ID.
  • Step 2: Go to the Devices tab.
  • Step 3: Select the device that has been stolen or is missing.
  • Step 4: Swipe up to access the full menu and select Erase This Device near the bottom.
  • Step 5: Details about the device will pop up and you will have to select Continue at the bottom of the screen.
  • Step 6: In order to erase the device, you will be asked to verify your Apple ID password.
  • Step 7: Enter a phone number in case someone finds your iPhone, then tap Next.
  • Step 8: Next, you’ll have the opportunity to enter a message that will be shown on your device when someone recovers it.
  • Step 9: Finally, select Erase.
  • Step 10: You will have to log in with your Apple ID password one last time to confirm.
  • Step 11: If the iPhone was off when it was lost or stolen, all data will erase once the phone is turned on and online.

How to Cancel an Erase if you Find your iPhone

If your iPhone is found, it is still possible to cancel the erase before it goes online.

To do so follow these steps:

  • Step 1: Sign into the Find My app using iCloud on someone else’s device, or on a computer.
  • Step 2: Go to Devices if you are not already there.
  • Step 3: Select the device that you want to cancel the erase for.
  • Step 4: Select Cancel Erase.
  • Step 5: Enter your Apple ID password to verify your identity.

How to Find a Lost Android Phone

An Android phone can be easily found through the Android Device Manager. But , This can be applicable only when your phone is powered.

  • Step 1: Go to the Find My Device site.
  • Step 2: Log in to the Google account that is associated with your phone.
  • Step 3: Choose the lost phone in the menu at the top of the screen.
  • Step 4: The location of your phone will appear on the map.
  • Step 5: If the map shows that your phone is nearby, click on “Play Sound.” The device will start ringing for the next 5 minutes, even if it was set to silent.

Unfortunately, Android phones that are dead cannot be located easily. However, you can follow the steps below to lock your phone.

  • Step 1: Go to Find My Device.
  • Step 2: Log in to the Google account that is associated with your phone.
  • Step 3: If you have more than one phone, choose it in the menu at the top of the screen.
  • Step 4: Click on “Secure Device.”
  • Step 5: Type in a message and contact phone number that someone can see to contact you if they find your phone. The message will be displayed in the home screen.
  • Step 6: Click on “Secure Device.”

how to Remove your Missing Device from your Account?

For iPhone, if you have AppleCare+ with Theft and Loss, do not remove your lost iPhone from your account until your claim has been approved. Later Go to to remove the missing device from your list of trusted devices.

For Android Phones:

  • On your Android phone or tablet, open your device’s Settings app Google. Manage your Google Account.
  • At the top, tap Security.
  • Under “Signing in to Google,” tap 2-Step Verification. You might need to sign in.
  • Under “Devices you trust,” tap Revoke all.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

How to Report a Stolen iPhone?

An iPhone can be marked as lost on Find My App, but this will not automatically report the theft to the police. In order to officially report a theft, you need to notify local authorities. The police will ask for information about the lost iPhone including its IMEI number. You can ask your phone provider to get this number if you aren’t sure. Keep a record of the crime reference number once the report is filed, since this number will be needed if you make a claim with your insurance.

How to Make a Phone Insurance Claim?

The best way to protect your Phone is with insurance. You can get it through a third-party company. However, it is most common to insure your iPhone through the AppleCare program. It has an optional add-on for just a few dollars a month. If you have insured prior to the theft, you can file an iPhone Theft and Loss Claim.


The above article mentions all possible ways on how to locate your lost cell phone even when it is turned off. Both iPhone and android phones have tools to find out their devices. If you suspect your Phone has been stolen, it is advised to lodge a missing device complaint to the local law enforcement authorities. Do not attempt to recover it by yourself.

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