Google announced the new Android Device Manager last week and promised that it would be coming to devices running 2.2 or later sometime over the next month. Well, it looks like that rollout has since begun. A thread over on Reddit brings talk of several devices having received the update already. To further that, we can already see it on a Nexus 7 and Galaxy S 4 Active.
Those looking to get setup can navigate into the Settings then into Security. From here look for the Device administrators option and you will see Android Device Manager. At this point it is just a matter of turning it on. A tap to check the box will bring up another screen that lists what this app will do and an Activate button.
The permissions note how the app can erase all data, change the screen-unlock password and lock the screen. Somewhat interesting is how it doesn't specify that it is also able to remotely track and locate your phone. The exact permissions read as follows;
- Erase all Data: Erase the phone's data without warning by performing a factory data reset.
- Change the screen-unlock password: Change the screen-unlock password.
- Lock the screen: Control how and when the screen locks.
Anyway, a tap of the Activate button will bring you back to the previous screen with one difference being the green checkmark in the box. Alternatively, there is a Cancel button for those who do not agree and want to keep this turned off. That all being said, while this is being pushed to devices and you can start to turn things on, there is the other side that is still missing.
So far we have yet to see the promised app that would allow you to remotely track and locate these devices. We suspect that will turn up in the Play Store sooner rather than later, but in the meantime, it does seem sort of refreshing that Google has gotten this on so many devices so quickly.