Manage your Android device’s location settings

When you have location turned on for your Android device, you can get info based on its location, such as commute predictions, nearby restaurants and local search results.

When an app is using your device’s location via GPS, the top of your screen shows Location Location.

Tip: When you turn off location for your device, apps and services will not be able to get your device’s location, but you could still get local results and ads based on your IP address.

Note: Some of these steps work only on Android 9 and up. Learn how to check your Android version.

Understand the location settings available on your device

Google has a number of location-based services, including:

Note: Apps have their own settings. Find out how to manage app location settings.

Turn location on or off for your device

  1. Open your device's Settings app.
  2. Tap Security & location.
  3. Tap Location.
  4. Turn Use location on or off.

Tip: You can also turn your device’s location on or off with Quick Settings. Find out how.

When Location is on
When Location is off
  • Your device’s location isn't shared with any apps. Features that use location may not work properly.
  • Google Location Services won’t collect data to improve location-based services.
  • You can get search results and ads based on your IP address.
  • You can’t see where your device is if you lose it. Find out about Find My Device.
  • You can’t share your device’s location with anyone via Google Maps. You can still send it to the emergency services in an emergency. Find out about Location Sharing with Google Maps and sending location in emergencies.
  • Even if you have Location History turned on, the places where your device goes won’t be saved. Find out about Location History.

Help your device get a more accurate location (Google Location Services a.k.a. Google Location Accuracy)

Turn your device’s location accuracy on or off

  1. Open your device's Settings app.
  2. Tap Security & location and then Location.
  3. Tap Advanced and then Google Location Accuracy.
    Note: If you don’t see 'Advanced' or if you see 'Mode', follow the steps for older Android versions.
  4. Turn Improve Location Accuracy on or off.
When Google Location Accuracy is on

When you have Google Location Accuracy turned on, your device uses these sources to get the most accurate location:

  • GPS
  • Wi-Fi
  • Mobile networks
  • Sensors
When Google Location Accuracy is off

When you turn off Google Location Accuracy, your device uses only GPS to find location. GPS can be slower and less accurate than other sources.

 

Let your device scan for nearby networks or devices

To help apps get better location info, you can let your device scan for nearby Wi-Fi access points or Bluetooth devices.

  1. Open your device's Settings app.
  2. Tap Security & location and then Location.
  3. Tap Advanced and then Scanning.
    Note: If you don’t see 'Advanced', tap Scanning.
  4. Turn Wi-Fi scanning or Bluetooth scanning on or off.

Send your location in an emergency

To help emergency services find you quickly, dial an emergency number. For example, dial:

  • 999 in the UK
  • 112 in Europe
  • 911 in the US

If Android Emergency Location Service (ELS) works in your country and on your mobile network, your device automatically sends its location using ELS.

How Emergency Location Service works

ELS turns on only when you call or text an emergency number.

During your emergency call, ELS turns on your device's location and uses Google Location Services. If needed, ELS can turn on mobile data. When you finish the call or text, your settings go back to how you had them.

Note: Sending your location with ELS is different from sharing it via Google Maps. Find out about Location Sharing with Google Maps.

If you’re using an older Android version

Choose location mode (Android 4.4-8.1)

You can choose your location mode based on accuracy, speed and battery use.

  1. Open your device's Settings app.
  2. Tap Security & Location and then Location.
    Note: If you don't see 'Security & Location', tap Location.
  3. Tap Mode. Then pick:
    • High accuracy: Use GPS, Wi-Fi, mobile networks and sensors to get the most accurate location. Use Google Location Services to help estimate your device's location faster and more accurately.
    • Battery saving: Use sources that use less battery, such as Wi-Fi and mobile networks. Use Google Location Services to help estimate your device's location faster and more accurately.
    • Device only: Use only GPS. Don’t use Google Location Services to provide location information. This can estimate your device's location more slowly and use more battery.
Choose location access (Android 4.1-4.3)

You can control what location information your device can use.

  1. Open your device's Settings app.
  2. Under 'Personal', tap Location access.
  3. At the top of the screen, turn Access to my location on or off.
    • When location access is on, pick either or both of:
      • GPS satellites: Lets your device estimate its location from satellite signals, like a GPS device in a car.
      • Wi-Fi & mobile network location: Lets your device use Google Location Services to help estimate its location faster, with or without GPS.
    • When location access is off:
      Your device can’t find its precise location or share it with any apps.

Note: If you have a tablet that more than one person uses, each person can have different location access settings.

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