Your Galaxy phone will now automatically get locked if someone steals it

Samsung Galaxy phone held in a hand. The screen shows the standard blue/purple/turquoise screen background with a Google search bar near the bottom of the screen. At the bottom is a navigation bar with for icons on for phone, messages, play store, and Chrome browser.

At Google I/O last month, Google announced many features for Android that prevent thieves from accessing a stolen device and data in it. The company said that it would roll out these features to devices running Android 10 and newer versions of the OS later this year.

The two features we are talking about are called Theft Detection Lock and Offline Device Lock. When these features become available on your Galaxy phone or tablet, they will automatically lock your device when someone steals it or tries to take it off the grid by switching off the cellular network, internet, Wi-Fi, or Bluetooth.

Why this actually needs “AI”, I don’t know, though. Is machine learning not good enough, or plain old trained algorithms (or 4th Industrial Revolution tech). Seems everything that processes anything in 2024 is AI-powered. I really can’t wait for the buzzword of 2025 to kick in. It’s amazing how the old words then quickly disappear from the PR slogans.

Still, having “automated” detection and locking for theft is a good thing to prevent the loss of phones. I just hope it does not lead to escalated levels of theft, where like with vehicle theft, it moved to kidnapping or hijacking because vehicles became too difficult to target on their own without the owner.