How to Track Someone Using a GPS Device on an Android Phone

Neha Roy


GPS is excellent for finding your smartphone when it's lost or stolen and navigating with Google Maps while driving. Furthermore, GPS continues to function even when the internet is turned off, which is quite useful. Simply download your maps in advance!

But what if you turned your Android phone into a GPS tracker? It may not be the most dependable alternative and it does have some really substantial limitations, but if you're in a pinch, it will work. Check out these instructions to make your Android phone a GPS tracker.

Tracking Using Android's Native Features

Find My Device is a function that is present on the majority of Android devices released in 2014 or after (formerly called Find My Android). To let Google know where your phone is, this service pings your device's location back to its servers continuously. Then, you may check the location of your smartphone at any time using the Google web interface. A Google account is required to access this feature.

How to Make Your Android Device Findable

Select Settings on your smartphone.

Click Security and passwords.

Choose Privacy.

Then click Find My Device.

Turn on the function on the following page.

The exact processes on your phone might be different, but for the majority of Android smartphones, the steps should be quite similar. If you're having trouble finding Find My Device on your device, simply launch the Settings app and type the name of the feature into the top-right search bar. The good part about Find My Device is that it gives you remote control access to the device, making it more than just a tracker.

Android Find My Device: How to Use It

To activate it, simply open a web browser, go to the Find My Device dashboard, and log in with your Google account (the same one associated with your device).

If you have multiple devices, after logging in, choose the one you wish to find, and Find My Device will display its most recent location, the time it was last seen, if it's connected to the internet, and its battery life.

It's reasonably accurate, especially if you reside in a city; in places with poor GPS visibility, it can be inaccurate by up to 20 metres. Additionally, GPS can be unreliable inside structures.

Tracking Using Android Apps From Third Parties

For whatever reason, if you don't like Find My Device, you may always use one of the many third-party replacements offered on the Google Play Store. These apps are simple to set up, and all you really need to do to utilise them is create an account.

 Prey and Life360 are the two that we advise. While the majority of tracking apps are promoted as anti-theft and anti-loss security apps for Android, they may also be used for simple tracking if you like.

Find Family & Friends with Life360

If you want to monitor your family members using their smartphones, Life360 is the software to use. Despite its primary usage, the app also allows you to follow your phone using GPS in case it becomes lost.

It benefits parents more because they can monitor their children's whereabouts from the comfort of their own homes. The app's lack of Find My Smartphone functionality like deleting or locking a misplaced device is its main drawback.

Obtain Life360 (Free, subscription available)

2. Prey

Prey and Find My Device are quite comparable in terms of functionality. Its main benefit is that you can track all of your devices from anywhere because it is compatible with a variety of operating systems, including Windows, Mac, Linux, and iPhone. When compared to the countless lesser-known tracking apps available on the Google Play Store, Prey's longevity gives it an advantage.

Obtain: Prey (Free, in-app purchases available)

Make Your Android Device Trackable by Making It Mountable

There is only one thing left to do after setting up your smartphone to be trackable, whether via Find My Device or a third-party app: attach the device to the person or thing you wish to track. This is obviously easier said than done.

Do you want to know how to use your phone to track a car?

Utilizing a magnetic automobile mount is the simplest and most efficient solution. The majority of two-piece kits include a magnetic base and an insert that you fit into the cover of your device (that you attach to whatever you want to mount). A strong enough magnetic field should be present in a good model to allow your phone to securely "snap" onto the base.

WixGear's Universal Stick-On Magnetic Car Mount is simple, practical, and reasonably priced. It is a stick-on type with ten magnets providing the strongest magnetic field possible.

Consider the WixGear Universal Suction Cup Magnetic Car Mount if you don't trust adhesives. Although the suction cup is much more noticeable than the stick-on version, the trade-off might be justified given its strength.

Lacking a phone case? Use sticky metal plates instead, like these Pop-Tech Universal Adhesive Metal Mounts, to replace the current system. They firmly adhere to the rear of your smartphone and enable normal use of magnetic mounts.

A Dedicated GPS Tracker Is the Best

Don't expect your Android handset to pass for a serious tracking device, though it can serve as a tracker in an emergency. You should be aware of the following three primary drawbacks, and if any of these cause you problems, you might want to think about using a specialised tracker instead:

Battery life: Your smartphone constantly runs a lot of software in the background, including system-level functions and third-party apps, which depletes the battery. With only GPS tracking processing required, a dedicated GPS tracker has substantially longer battery life between charges.

Signal Strength: Although GPS trackers aren't flawless, their transmissions are far stronger than those of smartphones. As a result, dedicated GPS trackers are not only more accurate, but they can also continue tracking in places where smartphones would typically lose signal.

Costs and risks: Do you want to give up your Android phone? What if you attached it to a car's undercarriage and it came loose in the middle of a highway? Dedicated GPS trackers are less complicated to mount, more durable, and less expensive to replace if they are lost or destroyed.

In other words, unless you have no other choice, avoid turning your Android phone into a GPS tracker. Try something like the Spytec Portable GPS Tracker as a more precise and dependable substitute.

There Are Many Applications for Your Android Phone

You may not realise how powerful your Android phone is. Among other things, you can use it as a camera to take pictures and videos, a communication tool to stay in touch with friends, family, and coworkers, and a GPS tracker.

Knowing how to use your phone's many capabilities can enable you to use it for a variety of purposes. Hopefully, by following the above procedures, you can now utilise your device as a GPS tracker.

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