Apple users have long been able to use iOS’s built-in device locator and remote wiping features, but Android users had to resort to third-party applications. That’s changing soon. Google today announced that it’ll launch a new Android Device Manager later this month that will allow you to locate and ring your misplaced (or stolen) device and perform a remote wipe so your data doesn’t end up in the wrong hands.
The service, Google says, will be available on devices running Android 2.2 or up and judging from today’s announcement, the Android Device Manager site will feature a dedicated area for pinging your lost device. It’s not clear what else users will be able to do on the new Device Manager site, however.
Overall, of course, this new service looks a lot like Apple’s Find My iPhone feature. You’ll be able to make your phone ring at maximum volume (just in case it’s stuck between your couch cushions), for example. The locator feature will highlight your phone’s location on a map (no surprise there) and remote wiping just takes a few clicks. Unlike on Apple’s platform, though, it doesn’t look like users will be able to send messages to their lost phones or use something akin to Apple’s remote lock tool.
There is nothing really new here, of course, and some OEMs already offered some of these features on their Android phone, but Android users will sure be happy to hear that Google is finally making its own tool available to its users.