mobile_defenseAs a general rule I traditionally avoid overused hyperbole. You know, like when a sporting event is called a “war” or when the most recent episode of “House” is called “the most intense and terrifying episode… EVER”. Yawn. I’ve always seen that for what it normally is, marketing fluff intended to get the reader hyped up about whatever it is they are marketing. I prefer to read and write the facts, that way, the reader can decide. So, it is with a great sense of trepidation I write this article and implement the over-used phrase of “must have app.”  Truth is, I believe this application is one of only a handful I have ever found that actually deserves the title.

Another rule I like to follow is to write reviews that are based on fact, not opinion. Again, I like the reader to decide. Having strayed from this rule just a tad in my leading paragraph I am going to divide this article into two parts, the facts about the app and then my opinion.

The Facts
Enterprise has long been on the cutting edge of protecting data. Financial giants employ staffs dedicated to protecting their investment in their data which used to mean protecting their PCs. A shift has occurred over the last few years that has seen data move from the PC to phones. Mobile Defense was started by two gentlemen with a background in data protection and mobile support who felt that the same level of protection their large financial company enjoyed should be available to everyone. Stuart Saunders is the CEO and Ken Adair is the co-founder of Mobile Defense. “‘Average Joe’ needs to protect himself,” he told me recently. It was based on this belief that the application was born.

Once installed, Mobile Defense acts as a central source of security for your phone, as well as your piece of mind. Features include: Alert, Lock, SIM change notification, approximate location of your phone, and much more. If your phone is lost or stolen, you simply login into and click to securely connect to your phone. Once connected, Mobile Defense provides you with a map of the location of your phone which is good to within a few meters. Additionally, you have the option to lock the phone and to send it an alarm. Now, this alarm is not your common, run of the mill beep. No, this is a car alarm bull horn at full sound that will shock who ever happens to have your phone (trust me), or certainly lead you to it in the event it’s just been misplaced under the sofa cushion. If a thief replaces the SIM, you are immediately notified with all the information you need to alert the police and recover your phone. What if the phone is off or the battery has powered down? Mobile Defense employs what Saunders referred to as persistent or sticky commands.” In short, whenever the phone is powered on, Mobile Defense jumps into action employing all the safeguards mentioned above.

The application is free of charge and free of ads, although the company may provide additional features for a fee in the future.

The Opinion
I wrote an article earlier referring to what we call “phones” as info-hubs. The truth is, I have everything in my phone from phone numbers, pictures, dates, and much more. It is no exaggeration to call it the hub of my information! Saunders feels that the continuing evolution of the phone as computer and information hub will ultimately force carriers into providing some level of protection or control on their handsets as a standard/included feature in the future. So, with Mobile Defense it’s fair to say we have an app of the future available today that provides us with the same level of protection large enterprises enjoy! Oh yeah, and it’s free. If that doesn’t define “must have app,” then I don’t know what does.

I asked Stuart about the beta tag on the site and he assured me it is only there because the application is constantly evolving. The version available on the Android Market is stable. It’s always exciting to talk to someone with passion and Stuart Saunders embodies this when speaking about this application. He seemed to get most excited when he shared some success stories that have come as a result of installing Mobile Defense. For instance, there was the man who recovered his phone after it had been through three different hands on its way to a beauty salon,  where it was sold. Each stop was identified by Mobile Defense.   Another touching story was the mom who found her runaway daughter with the help of the application.

Did I mention it’s free?

I hope to never “use” the application for recovery purposes, but I am glad it’s on my phone. In my humble and most sincere opinion, it should be on yours too.

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  1. Mobile Defense is not yet available for the Sprint Hero or other CDMA devices. I did some research and the developers say that it should be available soon.

    • Spoke to the good folks at Mobile Defense and CDMA support is in Alpha and hopes to be in Market within a few weeks!

  2. It sounds great, one slight problem (along with the "not available on this/that handset) is that it's not available outside the US either so the idea of every Android User having it just doesn't work just yet :-(

  3. I love it. It's a lot of fun to play with too. I have not seen the gps so responsive with any other program. I can't believe it's free, the program and the website are very well designed. It makes losing your phone an adventure rather than a tragedy!

  4. Mobile Defense is free for now.
    From the site:
    Important Notice: Mobile Defense is in public beta and we will be launching commercially very soon. In the future, there may be a nominal charge for premium services.

    • Ya, I mentioned that and spoke to Stuart about it. They will always keep a version free, but they have to make money. Sad, but true. This is one of the few apps, personally speaking, that I would be willing to pay for though.

  5. Is there alternative recovery app like Mobile Defense that is also available to users outside of US? This concept of regional apps is becoming ridiculous.

    • International support is coming later this year. Sign up to be notified [email protected]

      There are two reasons for this current Market limitation.

      1) This helps control growth while in beta and ensures current users with a high service level.

      2) In order keep the service free, there needed to be an alternative to SMS. Most international carriers don't offer a free email-to-sms gateway so Mobile Defense needed its own push notifications similar to how the native Gmail app works.

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