Find My iPhone Goes Free [Updated]

Along with the release of iOS 4.2 on Monday, Apple announced that it is making MobileMe’s Find My iPhone feature free. Previously, the feature was available only through Apple’s US$99 a year MobileMe suite of services.

Find My iPhoneApple’s Find My iPhone feature

Find My iPhone lets users track their iOS device’s location via Wi-Fi hotspot locations, cell tower triangulation, or GPS location. Once the device has been located, users can send alerts and messages to it, enable passcode locks, and erase data.

While it’s good news that the device tracking feature is available for free, Apple is offering the service at no charge to iPhone 4 owners, iPad owners, and fourth generation iPod touch owners. Users with earlier iPhone or iPod touch models will still need to pay for the MobileMe service to take advantage of Find My iPhone.

Apple’s Find My iPhone app is available as a free download at Apple’s iTunes-based App Store and lets users take advantage of the service’s features when they aren’t in front of a computer.

iOS 4.2 requires an iPhone 3G, 3GS or 4, or a second generation or newer iPod touch, or an iPad. It will be available as a free download via the iTunes application.

[Updated to clarify which devices can use Find My iPhone for free.]