What to Do If Your Android Device is Getting Weak GPS Signal


With the advancement of technology applied today on gadgets, we can safely say that every smartphone being sold in the market has GPS included. It’s almost a standard feature that you expect every gadget to have. However, there are some factors that can significantly influence the quality of the GPS signal — you have the device’s ROM, how the device is made, the configuration, and the software all play an important role.

So what can you do in case you are not getting an optimal GPS signal on your device? Below are some troubleshooting options you can try.

Enable the Improved Accuracy Mode

If you want to best possible signal, you’ll need to use more battery that you’re used to. But if a good GPS signal is all that is important to you, then it shouldn’t be a problem:

STEP 1: Swipe down from the top of your display, then tap the Location icon.

STEP 2: Long-press on it and you should be on the Location options.

STEP 3: Tap on Improved Accuracy and make sure that you have toggled on Wi-Fi scanning and Bluetooth scanning.

Identify If the Problem is Hardware or Software-Related

If your GPS problem is hardware related, then you won’t find any method that will work. To find out if it’s hardware related or not, follow these steps:

STEP 1: Install an app called GPS Essentials.

STEP 2: When you open the app and are in the app’s main menu, tap the Satellites option.

NOTE: You should now see how your phone connects to satellites around the planet.

STEP 3: If you do see your phone connecting, but your GPS is still out of control, then you’re looking into a possible software issue.

NOTE: If you don’t see any satellites, then it could either be because you have metal objects near you that are interfering, or it’s hardware related.

Check for Any Conflicting Apps

Android OS can get complicated at times and so can your apps. Sometimes, the way those apps interact with each other can cause those GPS problems. For example, if you run various location-based apps such as Google Maps and FourSquare, you could easily face GPS problems such as a weak signal. Task Killers have also been known to close background location services and can also be responsible for your GPS problems. Try getting rid of any Task Killer on your phone and uninstall any location-based apps you don’t really need.

Recalibrate Your Compass

Sometimes, the fix can be as easy as recalibrating your GPS. You can do this by using a compass app. Some phones already come with it, but if in case yours doesn’t, there are several to choose from on Google Play.

Hopefully, you still have the GPS Essentials app installed on your phone, then proceed with these steps:

STEP 1: Open up the app again, then tap the Compass icon.

STEP 2: Pick up your phone and rotate it vertically three times.

STEP 3: Make sure to keep the phone flat and move it slowly.

STEP 4: Once you’re done moving it vertically, spin your Android from back to front but this time vertically.

STEP 5: Make sure to do this three times.

Easy Fixes

I. Refresh Your GPS

STEP 1: Swipe down from the top of your display and toggle the GPS option.

STEP 2: You can quickly turn your GPS on and off from the notifications shade.

STEP 3: When you turn it off, make sure to wait five seconds before you turn it back on.

II. Remove Your Phone’s Case

Sometimes the solution is as easy as removing your case. Every one of them is made differently, and may the one that you have on your phone is affecting your phone’s GPS.

III. Toggle Airplane Mode

STEP 1: Swipe down from your display, then tap on Airplane Mode or Flight Mode.

STEP 2: Turn it on and wait for about 15 to 20 seconds before you turn it off again.

IV. Try Going Outside

GPS sensors need a clear view of the sky for them to work properly. Even how your phone is made can influence the quality of your phone. If you have a phone that might not be of good quality, try this easy fix.

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