This guide covers everything Apple added to the Find Me app on iOS 15.
How Track Your Lost iPhone On iOS 15
1. Live location
When you track a friend or family member with the Find Me app, they will now see continuous streaming updates on their location instead of updating with a new location every few minutes.
According to Apple, this feature should give you instant speed, direction, and progress when viewing someone's location.
2. Find a lost device that is turned off
Devices that are turned off can still be tracked on iOS 15 by the Find Me network. If the device battery is low or was turned off by a thief, the device can still be found if it is near another Apple device.
Find My Network is a feature that Apple introduced with iOS 13 and that makes it possible to find Apple devices even without a WiFi or cellular connection by using other nearby iPhones, iPads, and Macs.
In iOS 15, Apple expanded the Find Me network to also work with devices that are turned off. Apple hasn't detailed exactly how this feature works, but the U1, Bluetooth, or NFC chip will still have power in the background even if your device is turned off or has been idle for several hours.
Apple has a similar feature for car keys that use NFC, and it lasts about five hours after the “iPhone” runs out of battery. In this case, you can still unlock the car when your iPhone is off.
For this function to work, the Find My network function must be enabled. It's enabled by default, but you can check it by going to your profile, tapping Find Me, selecting Find Me iPhone, and then making sure the Find Me' network is turned on.
3. Find a lost device that has been erased
If someone steals your iPhone and then erases it, it will still appear in the Find Me app on iOS 15 and can be tracked even after it has been deleted.
This function is related to Activation Lock, which prevents someone from using your iPhone without your Apple ID and password. In iOS 14 and earlier iOS updates, wiping the device will make Activation Lock active so no one can use your iPhone without your password, but erasing the device prevents Find My from working.
A deleted iPhone won't show up in the Find Me app, but now erasing an iPhone no longer works this way. If Activation Lock is enabled (i.e. not removed with your username and password to disable Activation Lock), it is tied to your account and can be found via Find Me.
Combined with the ability to track the device when it's turned off, the Find My app serves as a much more powerful theft deterrent.
To prevent someone from being duped into buying a device linked to your account, the Hello screen will make it clear that the device is locked, Find My, and someone else's.
4. Farewell commemoration
With a disconnect alert, the Find My app can let you know if your iPhone or iPad is lagging by notifying you of any of the other devices you're with.
Disconnection alerts work for AirTags and third-party accessories integrated into the Find Me network. So, if you leave your wallet or MacBook at the coffee shop after leaving with your iPhone, iPhone will let you know.
Disconnection alerts can be activated in the Find Me app and must be enabled for each item you own. You can also set exceptions. So if you accidentally leave something at home, you won't receive a notification.
5. Find Mine for AirPods
For AirPods Max and AirPods Pro, the Find My network can provide an approximate location if this item is lost.
AirPods always show up in the Find My app, but until now their functionality has been limited. On iOS 14 and earlier versions of iOS, AirPods Pro and Max appear in Find Me, but if they are out of Bluetooth range of your own device, you'll only see their last known location.
The Find My network allows AirPods Pro and AirPods Max to communicate with other Apple devices so you can track them even when they're out of range of your own device. Widgets are available in two sizes, small and medium, and can be used to track people or items. The People track of your friends and family who share their location feature is enabled, and the Items widget tracks your AirTag items and third-party accessories that use the Find Me network.
You can get an approximate location using this method, and Apple says it will help you reach Bluetooth range so you can turn on the Voice Play feature to track it.
There's now a Find My widget that you can add to your Home screen or Today view to track items at a glance without opening the Find My app.
If you tap on one of the Find Me widgets, the full Find Me app opens.
6. Find Mine on iPad and Mac
The changes in this guide apply to iPhone, but iPad supports disconnect alerts, Find Me widgets, and live location for family and friends.
Macs with macOS Monterey support Find Me widgets and live locations for family and friends. Offline tracking and tracking for deleted devices are functions limited to iPhone.
7. Guide feedback
Do you have any questions about Find My in iOS 15, do you know a feature we left out, or would you like to provide feedback on this guide? Send us an email here.