By Alexandra Burlacu | Aug 05, 2013 06:40 AM EDT
Google finally caught up to Apple and its "Find my iPhone" feature by offering its own Android Device Manager, which is already rolling out.
The new Android Device Manager tool aims to help Android users locate their phones and keep their data safe. Up until now, users had to resort to third-party solutions to locate and remote wipe/lock their device.
"Have you ever lost your phone between the couch cushions or forgot it in a restaurant? Or maybe searching for your phone before you rush out the door is part of your morning routine? Later this month, the new Android Device Manager can help you out," Google touted in a blog post a few days ago announcing the new feature. "It's one of a few simple features you can use to keep your device - and the data you store inside - safe and secure."
"This service will be available later this month on devices running Android 2.2 or above; to use it, you will need to be signed in to your Google Account. There will also be an Android app to allow you to easily find and manage your devices. Stay tuned!"
It now seems that "later this month" is actually sooner, as some users started reporting that the new Android Device Manager feature was already rolling out to their devices. The new feature is arriving by way of Google Play Services version 3.2.25. It's not complete just yet, but it shouldn't be long now.
Android Device Manager will allow users to ring their device at maximum value so they can find it even if it was set on silent. In case the device is out of earshot, users will be able to locate it on a map in real time. If the device is lost or stolen, users can keep their data safe and make sure it doesn't end up in the wrong hands by quickly and securely erasing everything.
Little else is known about the new Google Device Manager at this point but the real functionality of ADM should become clearer once the web interface and Android app are up and running.
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