Recently, my iPhone 4S was stolen, right out of my pocket. Not only that, but my debit card, which was my special iPhone case, was stolen as well. Talk about inconvenient. But there are tools that can help you find a lost or stolen iPhone device, which can help you save a ton of money (Apple and most carriers will ask you to purchase a new iPhone at full retail price, so expect to pay at least $600 for the iPhone 4S, and even more for the iPhone 5). Here are the best apps that can help you find your lost or stolen iPhone.
1. Find My iPhone
Find my iPhone is an app that's already installed on your iPhone and iOS device. All you need to do is make sure you activate it. The Apple-developed app allows track your phone and find out where it is. The only problem is that the service only works if your phone is on and connected to a network, which means if a thief is remotely smart, he or she would just keep the device switched off. Find my iPhone may seem really convenient, but it's definitely not the best app to find your iPhone.
GadgetTrak is a paid app, but it's definitely worth the $3.99 price tag. The app creates location reports, sends messages to your phone, and snaps a photo of the thief using the built-in camera. Not only that, but you can program the app so that it can't be deleted.
3. Device Locator
Device Locator is another paid app, but it doesn't offer as much as other paid apps that help you find lost or stolen devices. The app costs $3.99 and basically does the same thing as Find my iPhone: track your phone's location, sound an alarm on the device, and send a message with sound. It also lets you take a photo, but it seems like other apps have more to offer.
4. Mobile Spy
Mobile Spy is really, really, really, expensive, but offers a ton of great features. Mobile Spy allows you to keep track of your iPhone in real time by reporting incoming and outgoing calls, text messages, GPS locations, your contact list, emails, website URLs, photos and videos. The service is $99.97 a year, which is a ton of money, but for people with important information on their devices, the service could be invaluable.
5. Phone Trace 4
For a useful and relatively inexpensive app that can help you find your iPhone or iOS device, Phone Trace 4 is the app for you. Phone Trace 5 lets users track lost or stolen iPhone's in real time, provides location reports, and the new number of the person who has your iPhone (if they change the number, which isn't as hard to do as it sounds). The app costs $7.99 but offers a lot more than other competing apps.