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How to Set Up Notify When Left Behind on Your iPhone or iPad

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Follow this guide to get notifications as soon as you leave one of your precious Apple devices or accessories behind in a new location.

two people looking for something with the guide of an iPhone

Flipping over everything in your house to look for a missing item is draining, time-consuming, and downright frustrating. With the iOS feature Notify When Left Behind, you can make your iPhone or iPad notify you if you leave an Apple device or accessory somewhere to help you avoid this as much as possible.

Here’s how to set up Notify When Left Behind to keep track of all your belongings.

What Is Notify When Left Behind?

Notify When Left Behind allows your iPhone to alert you if you leave supported devices, like an iPhone, AirTag, or supported third-party accessories, like a Beats earbuds, in an unknown location.

The feature works by alerting you anytime any of your paired devices are separated from your iPhone. You receive a notification stating that your device or accessory has been left behind and is no longer detected near you. The notification also tells you where that item was last seen.

Related: How to Use the Find Devices, Find Items, and Find People Apps on Apple Watch

What You’ll Need to Use Notify When Left Behind

The feature works with newer Apple devices. These include:

  • iPhone running iOS 15 and later
  • iPad running iPadOS 15 and later
  • Mac with Apple silicon chips
  • AirTags
  • Apple Watch
  • Supported Beats products
  • AirPods Pro, AirPods Max, and AirPods (3rd generation)

You’ll need an iPhone 12 or later to use Notify When Left Behind with AirPods Pro, AirPods Max, or AirPods (3rd generation).

The feature also currently supports the following third-party products:

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  • Belkin SOUNDFORM Freedom True Wireless Earbuds
  • Swissdigital bags with built-in SDD Finding system
  • Chipolo ONE Spot
  • VanMoof S3 and X3 E-Bikes

How to Set Up Notify When Left Behind

Before you start setting up the feature, update your iPhone to the latest version of iOS. You also need to set up Find My on your device. To enable the feature on your iPhone, iPod Touch, or iPad:

  1. Head to Settings, tap your name, then select Find My.
  2. Tap Find My iPhone, then toggle Find My iPhone on.
  3. Toggle Share My Location if you want your friends and family to find where you are.

Devices and accessories paired with your iPhone or set up and registered to your Apple ID account are automatically set up when you turn the Find My iPhone. If you want to find them even if they’re disconnected or turned off, be sure to enable Find My Network on your devices.


Now that everything’s ready, here’s how to enable the Notify When Left Behind feature:

  1. Open the Find My app on your iPhone.
  2. Tap Devices or Items.
  3. Select a device or item.
  4. Under Notifications, toggle Notify When Left Behind on. If you don’t see this option, your device may not be supported.

See Where You Left Your Item or Device

If you’ve successfully set Notify When Left Behind, you’ll now be notified whenever a device is left in an unknown location. To see where you left your device or item, simply tap on the notification that tells you that you left the item behind. Tap Continue to open the Find My app. From here you can do two things:

  • Choose Directions to display the directions where your item or device was left behind.
  • Choose Don’t Notify Me Here if you don’t want your iPhone to notify you whenever you leave a device at that location. You may tick this in areas like your home, since it’s normal to leave items and devices there from time to time.


For AirPods left inside their case, you can only get these notifications for up to 24 hours.

How to Manage Trusted Locations

You can also manage the locations in Find My so that it doesn’t notify you whenever you leave devices or items in specific locations. This can be useful for setting your home or any other place you might intentionally leave devices. To manage your locations:

  1. Open the Find My app.
  2. Tap the Devices or Items tab.
  3. Select a device or item.
  4. Under Notifications, select Notify When Left Behind.
  5. Tap New Location to add locations where you don’t want to be notified when leaving an item or device there.
  6. Tap the Delete button beside a location to delete it, so you’ll start receiving notifications whenever you leave items there.

Locate Your Items Easily

Losing or misplacing an item can be tiring at best and anxiety-inducing or expensive at worst. Most of the time, minutes to hours have passed before we realize that our items or devices aren’t with us anymore. But that needn’t be the case with Notify When Left Behind.

Get peace of mind by getting notified as soon as you’ve been separated to your devices. You can also use your iPhone as an aid to get to your device ASAP.


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