Even though the cost of an iPhone is very similar to what customers will spend on any other flagship in the United States, in a good portion of the rest of the world, an iPhone is considered to be a luxury item that’s sold at a steeper price, and as such, is attractive for theft. Countries like the United States have enforced laws that require OEMs to provide users with the ability to fully block a smartphone if stolen, and Apple was one of the pioneers of this service with its Activation Lock features on iOS 7. Today, more than a year after these services were implemented, we learn just how much of an impact it has made in the public.
In San Francisco alone, iPhone theft dropped a significant 40% when measuring a full year of robberies dating from September 2013, to September 2014. During that same period, iPhone theft dropped a decent 25% in New York as well. The city that saw the craziest drop in theft was actually London, where iPhone crime dropped 50% during the same period of time. Just to give you an idea of how big these numbers are, 1.6 million smartphones were stolen in the US in 2012, and if you would measure California separately, half of its crimes has to do with smartphone theft.
If you’re still not aware of how this service works, simply go into your iCloud settings and make sure you have “Find my iPhone” activated. This feature makes sure that even if a thief wipes your device completely, your iCloud password will still be required to activate the device in the future. This feature also works on the iPad, iPod Touch, and most of these features work on the Mac as well. Let’s see how these figures behave in 2015.