WOW! It's been over six weeks since my senior mom and I started on our iPad adventures, exploring her new iPad along with researching apps and accessories to see if they are good for elderly seniors. I'd say we are definitely NOT moving very fast, however she thinks we are rushing along the super internet highway at HIGH speeds. Which must mean we're going at about the best speed possible for us both.
Earlier this week we couldn't find her iPad, which was a bit stressful for her. She was convinced she had lost it forever, when in reality I had taken it to add more photos to it and it had gotten covered by a book. She was so relieved and quite happy to know I forget things too. Of course, I could blame that on age since I'm a baby boomer flirting with my senior citizen status but the reality is that I've always had a bit of a bad memory unless I really focus on learning something. Then I am great. Go figure.
But this whole incident did remind me that I needed to plan how to find it if it really did get misplaced. It's just a skinny little thing, so it's definitely easy to lose! I did some research and learned that the wonderful Apple people are right on top of that situation. (Nice to know we aren't the only ones who misplace it. ).
They have created this wonderful little iPhone app called "Find my iPhone." If you or a senior parent misplaces an iPad (or iPhone), you install the "Find my iPhone" app onto YOUR not-lost iPhone. (Or you can do as I did, and plan ahead by downloading it ahead of time.)
Then open the "Find my iPhone" app, type in the email and password of the MISSING iPad or iPhone. I did this and got the message, "No location available." I was expecting that, since I had location finder and cloud turned off. I then went into the settings on the iPad (See why planning ahead and test driving this is a great idea), Went to Location Services – and turned that ON. Then I spotted the words "Find my ipad" (about the middle of the screen in the pix above) and saw that it was showing that it was turned OFF so I turned that on as well. As soon as I did that, I got a message on the iPad that said, "FIND MY iPAD ALERT" accompanied by a little pinging noise that sounded a bit like a submarine sonar. Very cool, very loud, and VERY handy!
Generally, I like to leave the LOCATIONS settings turned OFF on my iPhone – partly for security concerns, and mostly because it really drains the battery fast. But for my senior mom, it is well worth leaving it on so we can find her iPad if it disappears. And for any of these devices, it definitely has added advantages such as:
- The option to use the Cloud to locate the iPad on a map (not necessary for my senior mom so I did NOT turn that on).
- Display a message or play a sound to help you find it. – Perfect for us – whether I'm at home or not! And I can even send her a reassuring message like – Hi Mom, here's your iPad. Just press the button that says something like, "Hi Mom, Hooray – here's your iPad. Just press the button and the beeping will stop. I love you. " I know that would make her feel much better if she had to go through all this – especially if she caught my type!
- You can also use that message option to notify someone else who might find your iPad – you could write something like, "Oh dear, I lost my iPad. Please call me at 000-000-0000 " That message will show up, even if your screen is locked.
- The loud beep is the best part as I could hear it from the furthest away part of our house. And even if you have the iPad or iPhone on silent, it will still play!
- You can set a passcode lock remotely to protect the contents if you lost the iPad where others might find it. (I'm not sure if you need Cloud on for that or not).
- If you're really worried, you can even use what's called Remote Wipe to protect your information – by deleting everything on it. Of course, you can always reinstall everything if you get it back. Since we have nothing more confidential than grandkid photos on her iPad, I haven't researched that, but I'm guessing that requires the Cloud. I should probably get that for my iPhone, but haven't yet.
- It even sends a notification to the iPad's email.
All in all, this is definitely one of the most vital iPad apps for seniors that I would recommend. It's easy to misplace things at any age, and becomes more and more common as we get older. With locations on, and the Find my iPhone app on my cell phone, my senior mom will be in great shape to find her ipad no matter where it's little sprouted feet might carry it. Now if we could just get something like that for missing socks….