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How to find your lost phone with the Google Home

If you misplace your phone around the house, the Google Home can help you locate it.

Taylor Martin/CNET

From Find My iPhone to Google's Find My Devices, there's no shortage of ways to find a lost phone these days.

While at home, you can now also use the Google Home ($129.00 at Dell Home) to find a phone lost in the couch cushions. Here's how.

Editors' note: This article was originally published April 5, 2017, and has been updated to reflect the Google Home's new ability to natively find a lost Android phone.

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Find your lost Android phone with the Google Home

Originally, even while a Google search could locate and ring a lost Android phone, Google Home didn't have the ability. Instead, Google created an IFTTT applet for this very purpose.

This week, in the most recent round of Google Home updates, Google enabled native compatibility with Find My Device. This means the Google Home can locate your Android phone and make it ring, even if it's on silent -- a particularly helpful little trick.

All you need to do to get the feature working is to make sure your device is:

  • Turned on with location enabled
  • Signed in to the same Google Account as your Google Home
  • Connected to Wi-Fi or mobile data
  • Visible on Google Play under the correct Google Account
  • Enabled in the Find My Device app

With all of these steps taken care of, you simply have to say, "OK, Google, find my phone" or, "OK, Google, ring my phone." The Home will then walk you through a list of devices it finds, asking which one you would like it to ring. First, it will find any registered devices (the ones listed in Find My Device under the same account). Using this route, your Android device will ring, and as soon as you wake the phone, the ringing will stop.

Find a lost iPhone with the Google Home

While Find My Device is limited to Android devices, you can still use the Google Home to locate a lost iPhone -- it just won't be able to ring the phone if it's been silenced.

To set this up, you will need to add your phone number under your My Account privacy settings. Go to myaccount.google.com/privacy, then go to Phone > Add Recovery Phone. Enter your phone number and click Next, followed by Get Code. Enter the six-digit code and click Verify.

Now when you tell the Google Home to find your phone, it can call that number, not a just specific device.

If you have registered devices, the Google Home will ask you if you want to ring those first. If you keep saying "No," it will say, "Let's try something else." Then it will then move on to phone numbers associated with your Google Account. When you tell it to ring a number, it will place a standard VoIP (Voice Over Internet Protocol) call to your phone, regardless of what kind of phone it is.