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Android Device Manager adds message and callback number options for lost phones

Android Device Manager, the service that helps you locate and lock lost devices, is picking up an update on the web and for Android that gives you better options when locking a device. Now from both the web and the updated Android app, when you go to forcibly lock a phone you own, you can add both a message and a phone number for the person with the phone to call you with.

The callback number is obscured when it's put on the lockscreen, and the phone simply offers a "call owner" button to hit. The message area shows up above, and can display any text you want to put in it.

The message and callback features are optional, but we'd highly recommend using them — if a person with your phone can simply give you a call at another number and then link up to get the device back, it's drastically more useful. You can try it out from the newest Android Device Manager app or on the web at android.com/devicemanager

Andrew was an Executive Editor, U.S. at Android Central between 2012 and 2020.

10 Comments
  • This is an excellent feature! Posted via Android Central App
  • i got the update to the mobile app today. im not getting the call back # on the app or the web.
  • thanks for the notification
  • great update, ive set my message to say the phones being pinged by my local police as a hopeful scare tactic into not wanting to be found with a stolen device if my phone ever goes missing haha. the first time i tried it out i could still break into my own phone by swiping down on the notification tray, the second time it locked that right up too but i could back out of the call owner screen by pressing the back button twice and try my luck at my regular lock screen pin instead. if it held that screen no matter what you tried to do to it (needs to be turned off with device manager from the website) it would be the perfect brick
  • My app updated yesterday but I'm not getting the phone number option... Posted via Android Central App
  • Use a different device and sign in under that one, then hit the lock screen option.
  • Same with me. Is there something we aren't doing?
  • I've used the Lock Screen note feature to do this for a while now. You pick up my phone and it has my Google Voice number scrolling across it. But this is still nice. Posted via Android Central App
  • How do you remove tablets you no longer use from the list of devices
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