The worst thing about losing a mobile is all the saved contacts, messages and pictures you never got around to backing up. Equally annoying though, is the fact that some chump has just made off with your awesome new touch-screen camera phone, scot-free.
Or did he? Increasingly sophisticated location-based services could mean being able to track down and retrieve your phone. Check out three apps that can protect, find and maybe even help you retrieve your phone.
FindIt 2.0 (BlackBerry)
Anyone who picks up your phone will see a pop-up message that, when closed, will trigger an email sent to you. FindIt 2.0 also has GPS features, so your email will include a Yahoo Maps link detailing the thief's location. Perhaps most hilarious of all is the new ‘stolen alarm', which, when you activate it, causes the phone to start yelling: 'This BlackBerry is stolen! This BlackBerry is stolen!'.
StopThief (Windows Mobile and Symbian)
This £10 app from UMU locks your handset and wipes its data if it's lost or stolen. Simply download the app to your phone, and if it's stolen, send an SMS from a PC or another phone to your SIM. The phone will then also inform up to three other preset phone numbers if the SIM is changed, and if your device is GPS-enabled, send its exact location to you. Wonder if this was the app they used on that pickpocketed Windows Mobile 6.5 handset at Mobile World Congress?
Password Trap (iPhone)
Evil-doers going through your phone will find a ‘passwords' menu, listing your (false) passwords, bank account details and personal info. As they scroll through intent on cleaning you out, Password Trap is detecting the device's location and emailing the details back to you, including a Google Maps link to where the thief is. Then, all you have to do is haul ass to get there, preferably with some backup muscle, we suppose.