Track your phone when it’s lost or stolen. Or use a live mobile tracker for parental control.
Ever lost your phone and wanted to get it back? Well, there’s an app for that. Many, in fact. Live mobile location trackers are incredibly useful when you’ve lost your phone or when it’s been stolen.
But that’s not all, a live mobile location tracker app can be used for. They’re handy for parental control as well. Some of the apps we will talk about below are specifically made for that.
It’s important to note that not all mobile tracker apps are created equal. Some only have very basic functionality, while others are not as reliable.
Perhaps you are wondering how these apps work? Does the phone need to be connected to the internet? Is there a difference between tracking a prepaid or a postpaid phone? Keep reading to find out! If you’re just looking for a list of the best live mobile location trackers we’ve got that covered too.
How do live mobile trackers work?
So how do live mobile location trackers work? The different apps we’re comparing below, work slightly differently from each other. But the basic technology they’re all built on works the same.
A live mobile tracker uses the GPS locator in the phone to get its location. A good thing to know is that the GPS function on modern phones works without using mobile data. So the phone doesn’t need to be connected to the internet for a live mobile tracker to work. It does need to be turned on however.
Is there a difference between tracking a prepaid or a postpaid phone?
Do live mobile location trackers work differently for prepaid phones than they do for postpaid ones? The short answer is no. Since GPS doesn’t work with the internet, all your phone needs to be is connected to a network.
This is true if you want to track your phone’s location and only its location. Many of the live mobile tracker apps we discuss below have more functionality than that. Those functions often do work on the internet. So if you want to use those functions it’s important to keep your data topped up.
Another thing to keep in mind is that a phone needs to be connected to a network for a mobile tracker to work. If the phone is turned off, it won’t work. Prepaid phones that aren’t used often get disconnected after a while. So if you have a prepaid phone and only use it once in a while, make sure to top it up regularly.
Topping up your prepaid phone
Luckily, topping up your prepaid phone these days is fast, safe and simple! You can do it right here on Recharge.com. Visit our call credit and data page and select your provider. Choose the amount of call credit or data you want and pay with your favourite payment method.
Is there a difference between tracking a phone with a regular SIM card and tracking one with an eSIM? The way tracking works is the same, so you might not notice a big difference.
But there is one advantage if you want to track a phone with an eSIM card. SIM cards can be taken out of the phone, making them impossible to track. You can’t do that with an eSIM card, so as long as it’s turned on and connected to a network it can be tracked.
This is very useful when your phone has been stolen. Criminals can no longer remove your SIM card and make the phone invisible to you. The eSIM card means you can more easily find your stolen phone back.
Best free live mobile location trackers
Like we said above, not all live mobile location tracker apps are the same. Which one is best for you depends on what you need from it and how much you want to spend on it.
In this section we’ll discuss those apps that are free to use, or have free versions that are packed with functionality.
1. Find my – The official way to track your iPhone
Every iPhone and iPad comes pre-installed with this app. You can use it to find any other apple product you own. It gives you a rough geographic location of where the device is.
You can also make the device ring. Handy if you dropped your phone while hiking and it’s in the bushes. Or if you’re just looking for the phone around the house.
The biggest downside to using ‘Find my’ as a tracking app is that it can only track other Apple products. You can’t use it to track Android phones. Besides that, all the phones you want to track have to be connected to your Apple ID.
Advantages: Easy to use, pre-installed on your iPhone.
Disadvantages: Can’t be used to track android phones.
2. Google find my device – The official way to track your Android phone
This works exactly the same as the ‘Find my’ app above. But you can use Google find my device to track your Android devices. It gives your phone’s rough geographic location. You can also make your phone ring with ‘Google find my device’.
‘Google find my device’ is both an app that can be installed from the Google Play Store and a website that you can reach from any device with a web browser. That makes it easy to find your phone if you lost it or it’s been stolen.
Advantages: Easy to use from any device
Disadvantages: Can’t be used to track iPhones or other apple devices.
3. Glympse – Easy tracking and sharing
Not all live mobile tracker apps are used to find a phone that’s been lost or stolen. You might want to share your location to friends, family or coworkers. The easiest (and free) way to do that is with the Glympse app.
You can share your location live with anyone with Glympse. They don’t even need to have the app themselves to see your location. So next time you can’t find your friends, just ask them to pop a Glympse in the group chat and you can see exactly where they are! Glympses end automatically, so you don’t have to worry that your friends can see where you are all the time.
Advantages: Easy to use and share your location, no need to have the app to see where someone else is.
Disadvantages: Doesn’t work without a data connection.
4. Family locator – Easy to use live tracking of family members
Family locator – Easy to use live tracking of family members
Another great live mobile tracker app is Family Locator. It works on both iPhone and Android. You can use it to find your own phone, or those of your family, when it’s lost or stolen.
But that’s not all Family Locator can do. The name itself already betrays this, but you can set up a group with the phones of all your family members. Within that group you can share your GPS location with each other, get notified when someone reaches their destination and set up safe zones, like your home. That way you always know where your family members are and that they are safe.
Advantages: Find not just your own phone, but those of family members as well.
Disadvantages: Not all features available in the free version.
Best paid live mobile location trackers
If you want to use a live mobile tracker just to find a missing phone, the free options above are more than enough. There are other reasons to use a live mobile tracker app, however. The biggest of those reasons is parental control.
If you’re willing to pay, the following apps have extra features that might be worth your money.
1. uMobix – the best mobile tracker for parental control
uMobix is one of the most comprehensive parental control and live tracking apps on the market. Because of its GPS tracker, you can see exactly where your child has been and get a notification if they’ve reached a certain location.
But that’s not all. With it you can see their social media activity, incoming calls and SMS messages. That way you can track what your child is doing and where and be totally at ease that they are safe.
Above all that, uMobix has many articles on safe internet and social media use on their blog.
Advantages: Has the most features of all apps in this list, Educational articles on the blog.
Disadvantages: Expensive, you might not want to track everything your child is doing online.
2. iSharing – the tracking app that doubles as a walkie talkie
iSharing’s free service already gives you its standout feature. You can use it to share your location and send and receive free voice messages.
With the paid version you can use it to track your phone’s location and that of your family’s phones. It can also give you real-time alerts when someone has reached their destination or track the GPS location of lost or stolen phones. It works on both iOS and Android phones.
Advantages: Don’t just send your location, but use iSharing as a walkie talkie as well, works on both iOS and Android.
Disadvantages: Besides the voice function it has very few extras over the free apps
3. Familonet – Stay safe and in contact with your family
Familonet works very similarly to the Family Locator app above. With one extra benefit. Familonet offers a panic button. You can use this app by making groups of your family or friends. Within those groups you can send the location of your phone or get notifications when someone arrives at their destination.
If someone pushes the panic button, notifications are sent to every phone in the groups that person is a part of. So if anyone’s in trouble, they’ll be able to reach you in no time.
Advantages: Panic button for emergencies, create multiple groups, works on both Android and iPhone.
Disadvantages: The panic button is the only real difference between Familonet and a free app.