How to Find Friends or Family with Find My (iPhone, iPad, Mac)

Jan 22, 2020 - 6 Comments

Find My app on Mac

The FindMy app for iPhone, iPad, and Mac can be used to easily find people, whether they are friends, family, or anyone else sharing their location with you. You can quite literally find them on a map where ever they are located with this feature, a very handy feature for many people.

We’ve already explained how to find a lost iPhone, iPad, or Mac with FindMy¬†and now we’re going to show you how to find people, too.

Finding people is super easy and it can be very useful, too. You’ll be able to find anyone who is part of your family, plus anyone who has explicitly shared their location with you as well. That could be friends on a night out, a relative, your children, a partner or spouse, or even someone trying to locate someone in a strange town who got lost and you’re trying to assist. Whatever the reason you’re looking for someone, Find My makes it easy to locate them and you can use the feature on any iPhone, iPad, or Mac.

The steps required to locate someone are slightly different depending on whether you’re using an iPhone, iPad, or Mac. But don’t worry, we’re going to run through them all. Let’s start with finding people with FindMy on iPhone and iPad.

How to Use Find My on iPhone or iPad to Find People

Using Find My on iPhone or iPad is very similar to using it on the Mac.

Find My app on iPad

  1. Open the FindMy app to get started on the iPhone or iPad
  2. Tap the “People” tab to see a list of all the people who share their location with you.
  3. Tap a person to see their location on the map. Tap the “i” button to change map settings such as the view type and distance units.
  4. A number of options appear when you tap a person.
    • Contact¬†‚Äď Opens the person’s contact card.
    • Directions¬†– Opens the Maps app and displays the directions required to reach the person.
    • Notifications¬†‚Äď Tap “Add” to set a new notification to inform you or the person when someone arrives or leaves a location.
    • Add to Favorites¬†‚Äď Adds the person as a favorite.
    • Edit Location Name¬†‚Äď Allows you to edit the name of the person’s current location.
    • Stop Sharing My Location¬†‚Äď Prevents the person from seeing your location.
    • Remove ‚Äď Removes the person from the Find My app.

That’s how easy it is to locate and find someone on a map with FindMy.

Remember, whoever you are trying to find (yourself included) must have Location Sharing enabled and they must have specifically chosen to share their location with you, and vice versa, otherwise they will not be visible to find in the Find My application. Sharing location can be done through the Find My app as well. That allows this feature to be used privately and without exposing location data to the world.

You or anyone else can share current location easily from Messages on iPhone, perpetually share their location via messages, and you can also choose to share location from the FindMy app directly on iPhone or iPad too.

How to Use Find My on a Mac to Find People

To start, open the Find My app on your Mac. You’ll find it in the “Applications” folder. Once the app is on-screen, it’s all fairly simple.

Find My app on Mac

  1. Click the “People” tab at the top of the left-hand panel to see a list of all the people who are sharing their location with you.
  2. Click a person to see their location on the map. You can also change how the map appears by clicking “Map,” “Hybrid,” or “Satellite.” The “+” and “-” buttons zoom in and out, respectively.
  3. Right-click a person to see additional options:
    • Show Contact Card¬†‚Äď Click this to see the person’s contact card in the Contacts app.
    • Directions¬†‚Äď This will open the Maps app and provide directions for reaching the person.
    • Add to Favorites¬†‚Äď You can add people to your Favorites list if required.
    • Remove¬†‚Äď This will remove the person from Find My completely.

That’s how FindMy works on Mac, but of course you can use FindMy on iPhone and iPad too, and all the features are the same and compatible with one another.

The FindMy app on modern macOS releases basically replaces the Find My Friends feature in Mac OS X from prior versions, but the core functionality is the same.

The Find My app is a really powerful tool that you may or might not make a lot of use of. But if you do have cause to use it you’ll be really pleased that it exists. Many parents use this feature, and so do a lot of friends and partners too, for many different reasons. There are even some employers and organizations that use the FindMy feature on employee owned devices. And of course, it’s all free and included with all iPhones, iPads, and Macs right out of the box, as long as everyone has an Apple ID and iCloud account enabled on their devices.

Being able to locate and track devices and people makes Apple’s renamed Find My app name make much more sense. Previously, Find My iPhone was able to do that, plus find any other Apple device. And people, for that matter. The app rename makes it clear that the Find My app can find ‚Äď almost ‚Äď anything, as long as it’s in the Apple ecosystem and either on your Apple ID or sharing their location with you.

Be sure to check out all of the other new features that are part of iOS 13 and iPadOS, too. There’s tons going on.

Do you use Find My, either to locate people or devices? If so, how did it work out for you and are there any alternatives we should know about? Let us know your thoughts and experiences with FindMy and finding people in the comments below.


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Posted by: Oliver Haslam in iPad, iPhone, Mac, Tips & Tricks


» Comments RSS Feed

  1. John Early says:

    How do you delete the Find my app from an IPad??

    • Paul says:

      You can delete the Find My app the same way you delete any other app from iPadOS;

      – Tap and hold on the “Find My” application until you see contextual menu and choose “Delete app”

      The brief video below shows this:


      – Tap and hold until the Find My app jiggles (past the menu appearing) then hit the (X) button to delete it and confirm the removal

      You’ll want to check your Find My settings before deleting the app, however. And the “Find My iPhone” feature is incredibly useful just in case you lose your device, so it’s better not to delete the app for most people, but instead limit it’s functionality.

  2. Morgan L says:

    I should set this up to try, thanks.

  3. Bill S says:

    “Directions” is not an option on any of my contact cards on both MacOS (Catalina) or iOS (13.3). What versions is this supposed to work with????

    • Paul says:

      The person must be sharing their location specifically with you, it does not work with any random contact unless they are sharing location with you either all of the time or at that time.

      To see the full options, ask someone to share their location with you through the Find My app, and you can reciprocate if you want, then you’ll both be able to see one another location and have the full options available.

      • Bill S says:

        Thank you for the reply giving the required conditions. Would have been helpful in the article, but we can’t have everything.

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