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Lost phone in Philadelphia
January 11, 2012 5:46 PM   Subscribe

A friend of mine lost her blackberry phone. What can be done on our end to get it back or get copies of the irreplaceable pictures of loved ones from it? Long-winded weepy details inside.

Lost a blackberry two nights ago and really, really would like to get it back, or at least get copies of the pictures from it. We've been calling it - no answer. The phone is locked. On the lock screen (if someone pushes to make a call) is a working email address. No emails have been come, and the spam has been checked. The phone is on Tmobile. Tmobile had nothing they could do, they said.

We're fairly sure the phone was lost in a gym. Looked under the machines, called it, looked under more machines, called it. Nothing. The phone has a morning alarm, so it should be going off loudly over and over again.

The curious thing is at first it went straight to voicemail overnight. Then yesterday (Tuesday) afternoon it would ring a couple of times and then go to voicemail. During that time, we did more searches and calls at the gym.

Since then, it has been just going straight to voicemail. Does that signal someone having it and taking it places? We have looked everywhere - car, purse, jackets, laundry, fridge, the ground, craigslist, etc.

We've called the few places we were and have narrowed down the disappearance window to 90 minutes on monday. None of the few places have it. My last resort is about to be hitting the gym at closing time, calling it, and hoping it lights up in the dark under a machine somewhere. The battery of the phone was fine on Monday but by tomorrow the phone will likely be dead.

I saw a post online where someone had been using their phone's bluetooth with their laptop, so they just took around their laptop until it detected the phone. Anybody got any clever ideas like that? Is there a way to track it with Carrier IQ or some little known method of finding a missing phone?

I need any ideas you have for ways to find the phone tonight. Thank you!
posted by furious to Technology (2 answers total)
 
Unfortunately, from the sound of things (calls going straight to voicemail) I'd say it is likely that whoever found the phone has already pulled the SIM and dumped it in the trash, so no amount of calling it will do any good now. At best, reporting it lost might get the IMEI blacklisted, but that would only make it harder to reuse, not help get it back or recover any data that was on it.

The fact that at one point it rang twice before going to voicemail is likely meaningless, by the way. The ringing tones are generated by the network as a general "work in progress" signal, even while it is still trying to locate the phone, forward the call to voicemail, wait for the voicemail service to answer, etc.
posted by robt at 7:14 PM on January 11, 2012


Next message show up (briefly) on screen even when locked? If so, send a text and, say, "Thanks for finding my phone! I have the $100 reward, meet you at the gym?"

Non-zero chance of success if you're warm, friendly, and appreciative in your message and offer money. Also, come through with the money if they do meet you. My Mom loses her iPad a couple of times a year and we've gotten it back each time (so far, knock on wood) with the same strategy. Each time I get a phone call or text within minutes. The first time this happened, she said "So I don't have to give them the money, right?" After a woman offered to drive across town to meet her to give her back her iPad (which she'd left on a park bench). Give them the money, be happy you have your pictures.
posted by arnicae at 7:26 PM on January 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


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