My phone fell out of my pocket while I was out walking the dog. The kids use my phone sometimes, so I had switched mobile data off. My wife is a very light sleeper, so the phone was on silent. This made it very difficult to find my phone.

1 Answer 1


Key parts of this solution:

  1. I had previously used my wife's phone as a hot-spot.
  2. I could call the lost phone and knew it was receiving the call.
  3. I had a way to visit android.com/find to find my own phone and make it ring loudly.
  4. I knew it had about 25% battery left, so I knew I could keep calling it.

The approach:

  1. Enable hot-spot on a friend's phone which you've previously used as a hot-spot.
  2. Keep calling the lost phone. This will keep the lost phone "awake". While it's awake, it'll look for WiFi.
  3. Retrace your steps while carrying your friend's phone. Keep looking at the "Connected Devices" screen on your friend's phone.
  4. When your phone appears in the "Connected Devices", you're close.
  5. At this point you can use android.com/find. How you do that will depend on what resources you have available. You might have to phone home and ask someone to do it on a laptop, or you might be lucky enough to have an old Android device with you, connected to the hot-spot on your friend's phone.

To figure out the method, I went out to the beach with my wife's phone and an old Android of my own (no SIM). I put the old Android on the ground and walked away with the hot-spot so I could figure out what the conditions needed to be for it to regain the WiFi connection to the hot-spot. The key thing was that after leaving the old Android on the ground for a while, it didn't matter how close the hot-spot was, the old Android wouldn't pick it up ... until I pressed a button and made the screen light up.

It took a bit of experimentation, conviction that I would succeed, and a lot of walking, but I eventually found it. Phew!


A note on battery consumption

When I first left the house with my phone for the dog walk, I noticed the battery was on 37%. I made a short call while I was out but didn't use it otherwise. While hunting for the phone, I must've called it 30 or 40 times, letting it ring for a minute each time. When I picked it up, the battery was on 20%.

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