The GPS location on my smartphone is inaccurate. How do I fix it?

Last Update date : Nov 11. 2021

The accuracy of your location may vary depending on your environment. The GPS sometimes doesn't work well when you are inside a house or a building. That is because buildings themselves are potential obstacles that may hinder satellite connection.

Please Note: This guide is deisgned for your Australian variant Galaxy devices, if you have an international device and require further support click here to get in touch with your Samsung subsidiary.

Please note the following instances where your GPS signal may get lost.

  • The GPS settings are turned off.
  • The device's screen is turned off.
  • You are holding your phone in a manner that blocks the antenna. This case is especially relevant to the Galaxy Z Flip when it is folded.
  • If you are in an area with tall buildings that block a direct view of the sky.
  • An oncoming storm may obstruct the view of satellites.
  • Connected to a weak Wi-Fi signal.
  • Using a 3rd party smartphone case that is not authorized by Samsung.

If you have a clear view of the sky yet your device still fails to provide an accurate location, then follow the steps.

Note:

  • A GPS issue may arise for Samsung smartphones running Android 10. Your location may appear incorrect due to various reasons: obstructed GPS signal, disabled location settings, or not properly set location option.
  • The settings and menu items may vary depending on your device model and software version. Being inside a car may result in a weak GPS signal due to various interference factors. Firstly, if your car is not started and you are having problems with the GPS signal, then your car tint may be the culprit. The metallic tinting materials can weaken the signal. Secondly, if your car is started, various electronic devices inside the car may interfere with the GPS. Hence, we recommend checking whether those electronic devices are turned off to improve your GPS signal.
  • Using a 3rd party smartphone case not authorized by Samsung may also cause a weak GPS signal, depending on the case material and weight. Remove the case and check if the issues have been resolved.
  • Screen images and menu items may vary depending on your model and software version.

To improve your GPS performance, you first need to make sure that your GPS is set correctly. Follow the steps below to increase your GPS accuracy:

➊ Go to “Settings” and select “Location”

➋ Set to "On"

➌ Go to “Improve accuracy”

➍ Tap on “Wi-Fi and Bluetooth scanning.” Then set as "On."

➎ Go to “Google Location Accuracy”

➏ Check to see if “Improve Location Accuracy” is turned "On"

Note:

  • If you use Google Location Accuracy with your mobile data turned on, it may incur a data usage fee depending on your data plan.

You may need to grant permission for the apps, using the GPS signal to continue with their services when they are running in the background. Follow the steps below:  

➊ Go to "Settings" and select "Location"

➋ Check to see if "Location" is turned on, and select "App permissions."

➌ From the list of apps, select an app that uses the GPS signal, such as Messages.

➍ Select your preferred option.

Note:

  • According to Google's new policy, smartphones running Android 10 are required to grant GPS permission for relevant apps to be provided with location data. 
  • Your GPS info may be inaccurate when your device screen is turned off depending on which option you selected in App permissions. Check each option below and select one that fits you best.
    “Allow all the time”: GPS permission is given to the app even when the app is running in the background.
    “Allow only while using the app”: The device's location is only known to the app when the app is in use.
    “Ask every time”: Every time you open the app, it must ask your permission to use your location.
    “Deny”: It will deny the location access for the app.
  • Please make sure to update your apps to the latest version if not done already.
  • If you are still having problems with your location, please check to see if the same issues also arise when using other GPS apps. 

TIPS

How to grant an app GPS permission

Go to "Settings" and select "Apps." Select the app you want to enable location for, and tap "Permission." Then select "Location" and tap on "Allow all the time."

TIPS

Having issues with a specific app?

Go to the app and tap on "ⓘ." Select "App details in store" and click the "Update" button to install the latest version.

If a GPS app is added to the "Sleeping apps" list, your device will turn its GPS services off. You may simply remove the app from the list by following the steps below:

➊ Go to “Settings” and select “Battery and device care”

➋ Select “Battery”

➌ Select “Background usage limits”

➍ Select “Sleeping apps”

➎ Tap on the three-dot menu on the top right and select "Delete"

➏ Select all the GPS apps you plan to use and select "Remove."

When your phone is in power-saving mode or if its screen is turned off, the GPS apps may not be provided with data in real-time. Go to Settings and make sure to change your power-saving mode to 'high performance' or 'optimized.'

➊ Go to “Settings” and select “Battery and device care”

➋ Select “Battery”

➌ Select "Power saving mode”

➍ Turn off “Power saving mode” and “Limit apps and home screen."

TIPS

Is your device automatically switching to power saving mode?

Go to “Settings" and select “Battery and device care.” Tap the three-dot menu on the top right and select "Automation.” Ensure that the "Adaptive power saving" is turned off.

If you require further assistance, please consult the user manual from our Manuals & Downloads page or contact our Samsung Care Australia experts on 1300 362 603 (Toll Free in Australia). You can also contact our Chat Support team or reach us through Samsung Members Community.

Thank you for your feedback!