Android Owner application in the market

Fri Nov 7, 2008

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Windows mobile has an “Owner Information” section you can enable on the today screen. This is useful if you leave your device behind somewhere and someone else picks it up. Strangely, the T-Mobile Android G1 phone does not have something like this.

I created an application named “Owner”, which you can download from the android market as “Factory-H Owner”, which somewhat fills in the missing functionality. Many users are quick to point out that you have to get past the ‘lock screen’ to run the Owner application. Unfortunately the api for modifying the lock screen is not released yet, but once it is, the Owner application will be updated to accomodate this functionality.

One thing to remember, Android is not just the G1 phone – it will run on many devices in the future. One place the “owner information” is very useful is on wireless scanners (which are not phones), so entering the owner information is nice if you have a scanner assigned to someone, and they leave it somewhere.

A possible feature for the Owner application is to have it sync the System.Settings.ANDROID_ID with a service on the internet. If I did this, you could potentially login to the service, and mark your device as ‘stolen’, then the app could check with the service and possibly phone home with it’s GPS location. Would users be interested in this functionality?