In this guide we’ll show you how to setup the Galaxy S9 so you can find your phone if it gets lost or stolen. Phones are an essential part of our lives and hold lots of sensitive data, so you’ll want to prepare for accidents or theft. We’ll be using Samsung’s own Find My Mobile app or Google’s Find My Device service.
When it comes to recovering your smartphone from loss or theft there are a few different options available. There are also important steps you need to take now that will make finding your Galaxy S9 easier later.
April and May are the two worst months of the year in terms of smartphone theft, followed by summertime. Meaning the next few months you should use caution, and be prepared. Here’s how Samsung and Google’s find my phone services work and how they differ. Then, we’ll tell you exactly what do to if you lose your Galaxy S9.
Use Google’s “Find My Device” to Find a Lost Galaxy S9
Previously known as the Android Device Manager, Google has their own Find My Device with lots of useful features. First, we recommend you download it today, not after a phone gets stolen. With this tool, you can find your phone lost upstairs, in your car in the driveway, or across town.
Google’s Find My Device can locate a phone, tablet or a watch. You can make this service play a sound to find a lost Galaxy S9 nearby, or even add a “call if found” message to your Galaxy S9 lock-screen. That’s pretty helpful. Additionally, Find My Device will allow you to remotely add a lock-screen password and pin, or completely erase your phone just like Samsung’s tool.
- Download Google’s Find My Device
- Sign-in and select the Galaxy S9 from the list of devices at the top
- Choose play sound, lock, erase or other options
- Follow instructions to retrieve your Galaxy S9
Find My Device can locate your Galaxy S9 down to a few feet, and even displays the battery level and connection status. This way you can easily see it’s at home on your WiFi, or somewhere you recently stayed. You can see some of the many options in our screenshot above.
Tap “play a sound” and the Galaxy S9 will blast your ringtone at full volume. Or, enable erase & lock for more security should you need it.
However, Google’s best feature is the “last known location” option. Even if the battery is dead, Find My Device will remember the last available location to help you try to retrieve the Galaxy S9. And remember, this app works for any and all Android devices, not just your phone. Google recommends contacting police in theft situations, as an officer can go with you to retrieve a stolen phone. This is one of the best ways to track down a device, or you can use Samsung’s own tool detailed below.
Samsung Find My Mobile
Once you get the Galaxy S9 you’ll want to take advantage of Samsung’s official Find My Mobile service. It’s very similar to Google or Apple’s find my device tools, but they are slightly different. We recommend heading to findmymobile.samsung.com, then click sign in and set up everything up today. If you never do this step it’ll be too late if your phone gets stolen. That’s why you should do this right now, as you’re reading this.
Samsung’s Find My Mobile will let you find, lock, or wipe out your Galaxy S9 at any moment. Even if you don’t have a lock screen measure in place, you can add one if you lose your phone. Additionally, the company has controls specifically for Samsung Pay to prevent fraudulent purchases. You can instantly erase Samsung Pay and debit cards, lock the Galaxy S9, then use the built-in map to find it. That’s one area where you’ll want to use this over Google’s tool.
Here’s the map you’ll see once you fire up Samsung’s program. If you have more than one device, scroll through them on the left side of the screen. Select your Galaxy S9 or Galaxy S9+ from the list. Then, wait for Find My Mobile to find your phone, and proceed to find, lock, or erase your device.
With this tool, you can make it ring at full volume to find it at home, or lock your phone if you left it at a restaurant. In case of an emergency, just erase everything by hitting Erase Data. Only do this as a last resort though, as it erases everything and that includes your SD card. That way nothing gets into the wrong hands.
However, the best feature of Samsung’s Find My Mobile is “Back Up My Device” as shown above. If you know you are never getting it back, one click will enable a full device backup. This will save all content, apps, photos, contacts and more to your Samsung account. Then, use Samsung’s SmartSwitch app that comes pre-installed on the Galaxy S9 to restore everything when you get a new phone.
You can also turn on battery saver mode to make your phone last longer until you find it. Or, “retrieve logs” will show all activity on your device. Basically, retrieve missed calls or messages remotely. There’s even an option to disable your fingerprint or password lock-screen security method.
And while we don’t recommend unlocking a lost device, this could be helpful so the person who found it can look through your contacts and call a family member or relative. Again, use caution, but it’s an option. Make sure you sign-in or sign up for a Samsung account, then add your Galaxy S9 to this app so you can find it in case of an accident or theft.
Other Options & More Details
As you can see, each version has different tools that people will find helpful. Google’s app is easy to use, and you can sign-in on a phone, tablet, laptop or any device to track down a lost device. We like the “last location” feature. Additionally, Samsung’s backup tool is extremely helpful so you don’t lose your phone and your memories at the same time.
These are the two best services when it comes to finding a lost or stolen Galaxy S9, but they aren’t your only options. Lookout Mobile is pre-installed on most Samsung smartphones, which has similar features. You can also head to the Google Play Store and download tracker apps, although most of them just mimic Samsung and Google’s controls.
In closing, we want to remind you that you’ll want to be prepared BEFORE disaster strikes. Setup Google’s Find My Device by hitting “setup erase & lock”, or go through the “prepare” steps on Samsung’s Find My Mobile. Then, if anything happens you’re already one step ahead and can safely find a lost or stolen phone. While you’re here, protect your Galaxy S9 in other ways with these best screen protectors, or a durable case.