Apple Location Services Not Working

We live in an RV, so our location changes rather frequently. In the last 12 months we’ve been everywhere from Seattle to Los Angeles to the Florida Keys and many points in between.

At some point my Apple location services began sticking. When we left Florida everything kept defaulting to Florida for locations. Eventually it reset to show our location at an RV park in Texas. We were there for two months. Now we are on the road again (NM/CO border area) and my laptop thinks we’re still in Texas. We access the internet through T-Mobile and AT&T hotspots, iPhone hotspots (Verizon) and park WiFi, and this problem seems to be the same across all of these providers.

This holds true across all apps and browsers, specifically the Apple Maps app, as well as Google Maps in both Chrome and Firefox. I have disabled and re-enabled Location permissions for both browsers and for Apple Maps. Nothing seems to be resetting it.

Googling has produced no solutions either. Have any of you run across this issue? If so, any suggestions for solutions?

Do you have some form of MiFi or Wireless hotspot in your RV, e.g. a way to share your Mobile connections with other WiFi Devices?

If this is the case, it may have been “located” by someone who maps where WiFi spots are by driving around.

Many location services use the location of WiFi hotspots as a way to quickly identify where someone is without relying on actual GPS or Cell triangulation.

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As I mentioned, AT&T and T-Mobile hotspots. Plus using Verizon phones as hotspots. I think you are right about the SSID mapping or association. I do find it hard to believe that anyone would be actively mapping the locations I have been at, given that these were well-established addresses.

Interestingly enough, I am currently using my AT&T hotspot and my location is being shown correctly! The only thing that changed is that we moved again, to a location we had visited last week. Is it possible I got mapped up here in my current locaiton? It’s a small town in south-central Colorado. Also tested the T-Mobile hotspot, it works as well. iPhone tethering too!

Glad it is resolved, but uneasy about being unsure why. If it happens again, how will I fix it?

It depends how the companies are mapping these locations. It could be that there are agreements with local companies who are travelling about anyway (e.g. a local taxi firm), so collecting the data is no extra work. In the end, if the data doesn’t get updated then it will slowly become inaccurate and out of dat, so I would guess they need to check at least monthly.

As to how you can stop it happening. It may be worth trying to hide your WiFi network SSID’s. Doing this runs the risk that someone imitates your network and you connect to the wrong one, but given you’re moving about that’s not likely.

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Looks like I will need to try that - my T-mobile router has gone back to placing me in the RV park in Texas :frowning: