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Troubleshoot phone location for routines

The Nest or Home app will ask you to update your phone's settings if there's something that you can do to improve how Home/Away Assist works for you. 

Your app regularly checks your phone or tablet settings to help make sure that your home switches between Home and Away as accurately as possible. If it sees that you can change a setting to make it work better, it will let you know by alerting you when you open the app. You'll see a customised list of things that you can change on your device. Make sure that you change the suggested settings, but you may also want to check all the settings below if you haven't already.

Note: The Nest or Home app will only show you the phone location screen no more than once a week, so you won't see it every time you need to use the app.

If you don't want to change your settings, you can set your app to not use your phone's location. 

  • In the Home app, go to your Home settings and tap Presence sensing.
  • In the Nest app, go to Settings and tap Home/Away Assist.
1. Turn off aeroplane mode

Aeroplane mode can help save battery charge as it disables Wi-Fi, mobile data and Bluetooth, but you may have forgotten to disable it. Make sure that the aeroplane icon is turned off.

2. Turn on Wi-Fi

Wi-Fi is one of the most important settings because it affects location accuracy. Make sure that the Wi-Fi icon is highlighted in Settings for Android or in Control Center for iOS.

3. Turn on Location Services and set to High accuracy
  1. Go to your phone's Settings and select Location. Make sure that it's toggled on. 
  2. Under 'Advanced', check that 'Google Location Accuracy' is on.
4. Set location scanning

Location scanning is another important setting because it affects location accuracy.

Go to your phone's Settings and select Location, then make sure that Wi-Fi scanning is set to on. It lets your phone use Wi-Fi to narrow down your location even if you have Wi-Fi turned off.

5. Turn on mobile data

Android

Go to your phone's OS Settings and tap Network and Internet and then Mobile network. Make sure that the mobile data switch is toggled on. It helps ensure that your home switches as quickly as possible when you leave or come back.

iOS

Open Settings and select Mobile. Make sure that the mobile data switch is green to show that it's set to on. It helps ensure that your home switches as quickly as possible when you leave or come back.

Important: If you have also set a mobile data limit to prevent additional charges, Home and Away routines or Home/Away Assist won't be able to use mobile information after you have exceeded your data limit.

6. Enable location permissions

Android

Go back to the app info screen and tap Permissions. Make sure that Location is on. It lets the app get data from Android's location services.

Note: The app uses the standard location services built into Android. These services use a combination of mobile tower signal strength, Wi-Fi network information and occasionally GPS to narrow down your location if required.

Don't restrict background data

Tap Data usage and make sure that the 'Restrict app background data' is off.

It's an essential setting to make sure that the app can help control your home even when the app isn't running.

Enable mobile data

Mobile data is an essential setting to have on. Turn it on to make sure that the Nest or Home app can switch your home when you don't have a Wi-Fi connection.

iOS

  1. Go to Settings and tap Privacy and then Location Services.
  2. Tap the switch to turn Location Services on. 
  3. Scroll down and tap the Home app then set 'Location Services' for the app to Always. If you also use the Nest app, do the same for it.

Each app that uses Location Services has an individual setting. It should be set to 'Always' for the app. It lets the app switch your home between Home and Away modes even if you don't have the app open.

Enable background app refresh

The Nest or Home app needs background app refresh turned on for Home and Away routines or Home/Away Assist to work.

Enable mobile data

Mobile data is an essential setting to have on. Turn it on to make sure that the Nest or Home app can switch your home when you don't have a Wi-Fi connection.

7. (Home app only) Check presence sensing settings

 

In the Home app, select Settings and then Presence sensing. Then check that these settings are configured correctly so that your phone's location is being determined accurately.

  • Presence sensing is turned on for your phone.
    • Turn presence sensing on if you want to use your phone's location to determine your Home or Away status.
    • Turn presence sensing off if you only want to use your home's devices to determine Home or Away status.
  • Your phone is accurately showing your current status as Home or Away, depending on your location.
  • All members of your household have enabled presence sensing on their phones
  • You've turned on presence sensing for all the devices that you want to contribute to this feature.

Turn on or off Presence sensing

  1. Open the Google Home app .
  2. Tap Settings Presence sensing.
  3. Tap the switch next to Allow this home to use phone location to turn it on or off.
8. Restart the app

In some cases, force quitting (Android or iOS) the Nest or Home app can disable Home and Away routines or Home/Away Assist. If you notice that your home doesn't switch between Home and Away modes when it should after you force quit, simply quit the app and restart it.

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