Find my Spouse

One of the great new features of the iPhone 3.0 is the “Find my iPhone” service. With this service, if you have lost your iPhone, you can send it a message to start ringing (even if the silencer is on) and so find it in your house. Alternatively, if it isn’t there, you can see where it last registered a location signal using GPS or phone tower triangulation. Of course, you can do that even if you haven’t lost the phone. For instance, I can now find my spouse and she can find me. Actually, I am more likely to be found as I am rarely apart from my iPhone. But I can see the wonderous possibilities for keeping track of teenage children.

The only problem is that the feature is not password protected. That is fine for adults but not fine for thieves or teenagers. In their case, they can simply switch off the feature. For thieves you can prevent this by having a password lock on the whole device but for teenagers that won’t really work. Apple need to think hard about this. Activating this feature properly might make the iPhone the phone of choice for parents and let’s face it, do that and demand becomes close to infinite.

6 thoughts on “Find my Spouse”

  1. Isn’t there something slightly sicko about this emerging “need” that parents have to micro-track their teenage children? It’s not as if there was a previous epidemic of teenage crime, kidnapping and murder which was only partially quelled by the ubiquity of mobile phones and can be further quelled by micro-tracking.
    People are doing it not because there is any sound reason, but simply because they can. It’s the same nasty attitude that British judges have just ruled against, following the spread of use of secret evidence from “immigration hearings (in 1997), to the detention of terrorists (from 2001), to parole-board hearings (in 2002) and, since 2006, to the freezing of suspected terrorists’ assets”:

    Secret evidence in court
    “Time to show your hand, or fold

    “Suspects must hear the case against them or go free, judges say […]”

    It seems to me that Britain, the US and Australia are becoming societies where it is the natural state of affairs for everyone to distrust and spy on everyone else.


  2. philosophically I agree with you MikeM, and wouldn’t use such a service on my kids. However, to each their own and I’m not going to complain if that’s what others desire. I disagree with much of the philosophy behind Parentonomics, but that said it’s a great read and a good insight.
    PS due to the excessive site comment requirements, I’m never commenting here again. This is my third attempt to deal with CAPTCHA, and yep, I’m caught.


  3. wilful,
    I agree that some of the captchas have been getting rather fey recently, but if you get one that is truly away with the fairies, click on the top little blue button with the two curved arrows in it, and you’ll get a different one.


  4. This isnt an apple specific service or idea (although lets face it – its probably more accessible/usable on theh iphone)
    Telstra offers this service ‘independant’ of iphone. And my guess is that its more accruate than the apple version which presumably just uses the
    However you still cant spy on your kids by force it seems ….”At any time you can set whether you want to be visible or invisible (to all or just some people). You can even set whether you want your exact location, or just an approximate location to be available. You can also stop the service at any time”


  5. wilful: You might be more positively disposed towards the CAPTCHAs used on this site if you knew that each time you fill one out, you’re helping to digitize old books for library collections.  The words in each re-CAPTCHA are ones that OCR software couldn’t figure out – the responses are collected back to improve the digitization of the books they came from.


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