One of the most frustrating aspects of contemporary smartphones is their unfortunate tendency to run out of battery at the most inconvenient times. And when that happens, you find yourself stuck without your contacts, unable to make calls without mooching off other people’s plans – all while trying to remember your friend’s number.
A newly released app for both android and iPhone, entitled Hotel My Phone, helps you handle this issue with grace by allowing you to access your phone – including all its information and plan from other people’s devices. To quote the app’s website, it allows you to “borrow a friend’s phone and use it as your own.”
Mind if I use my phone you’re holding
Developed by Montreal-based pplconnect, the app seeks to promote this form of phone sharing between friends – whether your phone died, or you forgot it at home and you want to check it for updates – by providing stars to users who connect their phones to a broader network, and who actively lend it to their friends in need.
The concept of remote access to a computer has been around for a while. However, taking it to the world of smartphones is a step forward for two primary reasons – it allows you to access your contacts even when your phone is actually off, and to use your own account to send text messages from other people’s phones (using a generic Hotel My Phone Number). This way you can still get in touch with people when your phone is dead.
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The app is free to use when you are logged in from your friend’s phone, but if you find yourself accessing your phone from a friendly stranger’s device you will end up paying a small service fee for use out of your “Hotel Network”.
Hotel my Phone is the latest iteration of pplconnect’s original app, developed for android only, which allowed users to log into their phones from their computers –a feature similar to other applications like air droid and mighty text. Founded in 2012 by Denzil D’Sa and Jenviev Azzolin, the company raised a million dollars in private funding and was a finalist at the SXSW 2014 accelerator.
Hotel My Phone is the first app to allow users to access their phones – and plans – from other user devices. This of course comes with a cost – the ability for other people to access your personal information far more easily – by either cracking your password, accessing the app if you forget to log out, or by gaining access to the centralized database Hotel my Phone must maintain to allow you access to your information even when your phone is dead.
As usual, the added convenience of accessing your phone from anywhere comes with an added security risk, but it’s good to know there’s a solution for all those cases when your phone is lost or dead.