Getting your Smartphone (iPhone) back

Since I have started to capture some ideas via my iPhone (e.g., with Notica or Awesome Note), I am a little afraid that I might loose it. While Awesome Note can sync the notes with Evernote or Google Docs, many other data are only on the phone and I would miss them if I loose the phone (to say nothing about the — costly — phone itself!).

Believing that most people are basically honest (kinda), I have written another phone number on the device. But this text might get lost, smudged, or overlooked (I use a bumper case which covers this text).

So I have created a personal lock screen:


The text roughly translates to:

Do you still see me somewhere?
My name is Daniel Wessel and I would be very happy (and grateful [in the sense of reciprocation]), if you would give me back my iPhone.
You can reach me via:
eMail: …
Tel.: …
Many thanks. 🙂

and was easy to create by using the iPhone ability to do screenshots (Home Button + On/Off-Switch on top of the device) and InDesign (Layers for the original wallpaper, one for the screenshot with the unlock slider and the time to see where you can place the text, then remove the screenshot and export it as .pdf). If you have the PDF you can open it in a graphic program and scale it to 640 x 960 and save it as .png, then move it on the device (e.g., via iTunes or by sending it per eMail), and go to Settings – Wallpaper and select it for the Lock Screen). Note: you do not see the lock-screen image if you have connected the iPhone/iPod touch to the computer, then it charges the battery and shows you an image of the battery status!).

I hope I will never find out whether it works or not, but I feel more confident that a honest finder (not a thief) has the ability to return it. Of course, the other phone number is still written on the device (with some scotch tape over it, to protect it from smudging), because if the iPhone has no power (battery empty), it will not show this information.

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