A new app you'll thank me for later

March 3, 2011
2 min read


Confession time: my Blackberry is pretty much attached to my person at all times. Certainly never more than arms length away. Yes, I’m one of those. I’m sorry. It does feel good to say out loud though.

Now knowing this, you can imagine my distress when my precious device was left in a taxi a few years back. It’s still painful to talk about, though there was a happy ending. My friend and I called it relentlessly until the cabbie finally answered it, and circled back to drop it off.

But not all lost phones are so lucky…until now.

This week, mobile-security firm Lookout announced a new free Android (take that iPhone!) app called Plan B. I know what you’re thinking, there are plenty of apps already out there to do this same thing. What gives this app the edge is that you don’t have to plan ahead. You can install the app via the web after you’ve lost it.

According to Lookout’s blog:

“…Once Plan B has located your phone, check your Gmail again to find a link to a Google Map of where your phone is located. For 10 minutes Plan B will send you a series of consecutive emails with refined location updates every few minutes. Since this is a beta project as part of Lookout Labs, it is only available in the U.S. on the four major carriers (AT&T, Sprint, Verizon and T-Mobile) and you must be on Android 2.0 and above.”

Hopefully none of you have to deal with this. But a recent report published by Mintel says there are about 6% of smartphone users that will. And if you’re under 45, sorry – it seems 21% of us “break or lose my phone typically more than once a year.”

Jennifer Werner
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