Android could steal one of the iPhone's best features — and we're glad

Apple AirTags
(Image credit: Apple)

Google might be working on an Android version of the Find My network that you find on the best iPhones and other Apple devices. Leveraging the power of Play Services as well as the vast amount of Android phones out there, Google could come up with an even better solution.

The Find My network is an interesting concept — even if it does make some of us a bit queasy — and it was only a matter of time before Google put its weight behind its own variant. But we'd need some Pixel Tags to truly match Apple's Find My ecosystem.

In case you don't know, Find My is a massive network of Apple devices that creates a web of device locations. That means you can track something that you lost, like your iPhone or whatever you attached your AirTag to. So having an Android equivalent would be great.

Google already has the excellent Find My Device app, where you can sign in on another device to track the last known location of your phone. It works quite well most of the time, even if it has some extra steps to get going. Taking that and turning it into something more like Find My would be helpful to the billions of Android users.

XDA Developers discovered two references to a "find_device_network" in the latest Play Services beta. The string description reads, "Allows your phone to help locate your and other people’s devices." This would, theoretically, mean that locating your lost device would become even easier if you have another Android device nearby (like a friend or family member's phone).

If Google plays its cards right, this could be a huge boon. Basically every Android device outside of China runs Play Services, so you can see the utility here. Other than those two strings found by XDA, we don't know anything else about this Find My equivalent, but perhaps Google could announce it alongside the Pixel 6 later this year. 

Jordan Palmer
Phones Editor

Jordan is the Phones Editor for Tom's Guide, covering all things phone-related. He's written about phones for over six years and plans to continue for a long while to come. He loves nothing more than relaxing in his home with a book, game, or his latest personal writing project. Jordan likes finding new things to dive into, from books and games to new mechanical keyboard switches and fun keycap sets. Outside of work, you can find him poring over open-source software and his studies.