Your smartphone’s GPS is not a sensor that makes its presence felt very frequently. You don’t really interact with the GPS like with WiFi or Bluetooth, turning it on and off multiple times throughout the day. However, the location-oriented sensor still comes into action every time you want to navigate to work, share your current coordinates with a friend via WhatsApp, or even need help in finding a lost Android device. Nonetheless, there are times when one is bound to feel that it is necessary to improve Android GPS’ performance. If the Maps app on your Android takes a long time to detect your current location, there might be a problem with your GPS’ calibration and configuration. Fortunately, there are a few steps (and an app) that can improve Android GPS performance pretty easily.
Android’s stock Settings app comes with some default GPS-related options. These options are left untouched most of the times. With some tinkering though, it is possible to fix any lingering location detection issues with ease.
Optimizing Settings to Improve Android GPS Response Time
- Open the stock Settings app on your Android.
- Look for the ‘Location Services’ entry on your phone. It might reside inside the ‘More’ section, or on the main Settings screen, depending upon your OS version.
- Make sure all 3 options inside the Location Services menu are enabled.
- Find the Google Maps app on your Android, and launch it. Since this app comes pre-installed on all Andoird devices, you should be able to locate it in the app drawer.
- Navigate to the ‘Google location settings’ menu under the app’s settings. Enable ‘Access location’.
- Install the GPS Status & Toolbox app, linked at the end of this post. This app plays a vital role in helping you improve Android GPS response time.
- Hit the ‘Tools’ option in the GPS Status & Toolbox app.
- Calibrate your device’s compass and pitch / roll both using the onscreen instructions. Please note that the calibration works best if you are outdoors.
- Once calibrated, enable your device’s Airplane mode.
- In the GPS Status app, select the Reset option under ‘Tools Manage A-GPS state’.
- Wait for 20 minutes without using your mobile. Once this time period has elapsed, disable Airplane mode.
- Go back to the menu accessed in step 10 and tap ‘Download’.
- Perform the usual ‘8’ motion with your handset for a final bout of GPS calibration.
The above 13 steps help improve Android GPS performance for most users. Having said that, you might still experience lackluster accuracy from your device. This might result from poor GPS coverage in your area. For almost all other reasons though, this guide is sure to make the GPS quicker to home in on your location.