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Yep, It finally happened.

After preaching for so long about mobility…

After evangelizing internally, at customers, on events and on the internet..

After battling with security and non-believers…

I lost my smartphone!!


Last weekend, after I had done all of my errands (and I had a lot of shopping to do) I finally plunged down on my couch and booted my “media-center” to watch a Sunday afternoon film.

All my groceries were in the fridge, I had a mug full of hot chocolate milk, cookies and a real classic (Guns Of Navarone). It was raining outside and pretty darn cold for this time of the year. My dirty laundry was in the washer. The kitchen floor was cleaned after a recent beer-incident and a fresh scent of pine filled the living area. What better way to spend a lazy Sunday afternoon?

As I wanted to start the film, I reached for my smartphone – which I use as a remote control for XBMC – and noticed that it wasn’t in my pocket. Neither was it on my coffee table, where I normally put it next to my tablet. (That other mobile gadget) Annoyed that I would have to get out of my sofa, I checked my bedside table. No phone there. Not on the livingroom table either. Maybe in my car… So I rushed down to check if I hadn’t left it there. To no avail.

I even decided to check the elevator in our apartment building. Of course there had to be people in there. When I then asked my neighbours if they hadn’t seen a small black phone “Goes by the name of Google”, they started giving me worried looks. “Did you bump your head? Should we call someone?”

– “I tried calling my phone, but it doesn’t obey well.”

At this point I started getting worried.

Maybe I lost it in the store, or on the parking lot…

Darn it, I paid for that equipment myself. Losing an expensive device like that is not my idea of a weekend well spent. The second thought that shot through my mind was a bit less tangible.

Good heavens no, My personal data!!

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Luckily, my phone is protected with a pin code, so I didn’t worry too much that someone would get in. At least not any time soon until they hook it up to a pc and start doing some complex hackapalooza on it. Another lucky break was the fact that I had set-up google apps device policy on my mobile. So I ran back up to my apartment, yanked my laptop out of my backpack, where it had been rotting away since Friday evening, and pulled up the google Apps dashboard.

The first thing I did was remotely changing my pin code to a complex 46 character password with a lot of special symbols like “@#|<>*”. Just to make sure no-one would get in. As I was pondering whether or not I would remotely whipe and lockdown the phone, I decided to first pull up the device locator. This turned out to be a good reflex. Oddly enough, it was pointing directly to my apartment. More specifically, it appeared as if it was pointing to my laundry machine.

So I jumped up from my couch and hurried to my laundry machine, which was spinning at full speed. There was no stopping it anymore at this point in time. But why wasn’t I hearing the distinct *Kabunk Klunk, Kadunk* sound that my phone would undoubtebly make in the washer? Maybe it wasn’t really in the machine. So instead I gave the laundry basket a good toss, and yes Sirreee indeed!

There was my phone, amidst of my dirty laundry. A bit smelly, but hey, I was happy to have it back.

This also explained why I had dirty socks on my coffee table as well… Apparently I tossed my phone in the laundry basket and put my dirty socks on the coffee table. Good thing I didn’t put the socks in my pocket. That would’ve resulted in more laundry.

Of course, having changed my pin code, it was a pain in the *** to unlock my phone and reset my pin code again, but I sure am happy that I didn’t press the remote wipe button. Then it would’ve taken me even longer to start my lazy Sunday afternoon film…

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6 Comments

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        1. Tom Van Doorslaer Post author

          Nope. Don’t have a paying account, so I can’t call phone numbers.

          Google Apps does have a function to make an alarm go off on your phone, but in my panic, I didn’t take that into consideration.

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  1. Vickie Brown

    Where’s My Droid is an absolute lifesaver in these situations. I have also retired my old landline and if I’m home alone, there’s no way to call my phone so I can find where I last set it down. Where’s My Droid makes your phone scream quite loudly, even if you last left it in silent mode. Just be sure to warn anyone nearby before you decide to test the app’s functionality 😉

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    1. Tom Van Doorslaer Post author

      Hi Vicky,

      Yep, “where’s my droid” can certainly be a lifesaver. Similar functionality also exists in Google apps, but I overlooked it.

      Cheers,

      Tom

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