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Do you know if there is a way to permanently disable precise location?

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Andy Burnelli

Jan 18, 2023, 1:11:21 PM1/18/23
This would be a big leap in privacy if we can pull it off together.

Do you know if there is a way to _permanently_ disable precise location?
Never do I need or want to use anything but GPS for location accuracy.

The pernicious problem described below did NOT use to be the case.

Based on my tests today of all the parking-location apps suggested here:
*find my car*

It seems now, that every "map related" app that links in the GSF spyware,
_forces_ upon you unnecessary de facto Google spying by needlessly
requiring the app to turn on two pernicious Google spyware settings,
even if you constantly turn those to settings off!
Google Location Accuracy = off
Wi-Fi scanning = off

It used to be they'd "ask" but you could turn on the GPS radio manually,
and they'd accept that they had GPS sufficient information without
resorting to uploading your location needlessly to Google servers.

The problem is no matter how many times I turn precise location off,
either globally or per app, many (if not almost all) the location-aware
apps turn it back on.

I don't ever want any app to ever be able to turn precise location on.

I have zero desire to use Wi-Fi access points and Bluetooth beacons to
determine my precise location, particularly since I often spoof GPS.

What I get is an app gets confused because the Wi-Fi is telling it
I'm in one location but the GPS says I'm in another - where eventually,
in almost all (if not all cases), the GPS wins out in the end.

Unfortunately for me, almost every app which asks for location nowadays,
automatically turns on "Use precise location", no matter whether you've
already turned precise location access off for that specific app.

It doesn't matter if you don't even have a Google Account on the phone,
because that's not the location tracking that I'm talking about here.
Android 12 Settings > Privacy > Google location history > {no account)

It doesn't even matter if you've globally turned it off in the settings!
Android12 Settings > Location > Location Services >
Google Location Accuracy = off
Wi-Fi scanning = off
Bluetooth scanning = off

Even if you have every app that needs GPS set to "Allow only while using
the app", many of those apps will ask EVERY TIME for "precise location".
Android12 Settings > Apps > Permission manager > Location > {app} >
Use precise location = off

The reason is most gps-enabled apps keep turning precise location back on!
android.permission.ACCESS_BACKGROUND_LOCATION = this stays off usually
android.permission.ACCESS_COURSE_LOCATION = this is required for GPS
android.permission.ACCESS_FINE_LOCATION = this keeps turning back on!

Even if you have your Wi-Fi radio & Bluetooth radio turned off, many of
those apps still ask EVERY TIME for "precise location" - and worse - the
apps won't run until you say yes to the request for location, and then
saying yes will automatically turn on precise location every time.

Worse than all that, even if you already turned on the GPS and you already
turned off precise location for all your apps and you already set every app
to only use the location when the app is running, still most apps will ask
for precise location (and then you can manually turn it off yet again).\

I turned off all the system apps location permission that I could in
Android12 Settings > Location > App permissions >
Show system > Allowed all the time >

But some of them are grayed out and therefore can't be turned off.
Fused Location = Allow all the time (grayed out)
Fused Location = Use precise location (grayed out)
Samsung Location SDK = Allow all the time (grayed out)
Samsung Location SDK = Use precise location (grayed out)

I will never want precise location to be turned on, mainly because it gives
away my true location (in terms of other people's Wi-Fi access points)
and more importantly because I never will need location accuracy better
than GPS which is just fine for what I want and for what I need.

Do you know if there is a way to _permanently_ disable precise location?

NOTE: I'm not rooted (the Galaxy A32-5G SM-A326U can't be rooted) & I
don't have Tasker and IFTTT (if this, then that) requires an account,
but I installed both MacroDroid & Automate which are better behaved
(but I don't yet know if they can do the job of turning off the GSF
"assisted_gps_enabled" inherently malevolent spyware permissions).
Also I have adb, so maybe I can revoke the permissions using that?

Jeff Liebermann

Jan 19, 2023, 8:17:40 PM1/19/23
On Wed, 18 Jan 2023 18:11:30 +0000, Andy Burnelli <>

>Do you know if there is a way to _permanently_ disable precise location?
>Never do I need or want to use anything but GPS for location accuracy.

Easy. Don't use the phone's internal GPS receiver. Instead, use an
external GPS receiver that talks to a mapping app that uses only
NMEA-0183 or NMEA-2000 sentences for location. As far as I can tell
from 15 minutes of Googling, there is no NMEA-0183 sentence for cell
site corrections. However, there might be something in the various
manufacturers proprietary sentences.

There's nothing to prevent Google or others from sniffing everything
that goes in and out of your phone and using the data for their
nefarious purposes. If you want real location privacy, use something
for navigation that doesn't have internet connectivity, such as a
marine, hiking, or aircraft GPS receiver.

No recommendations on which USB GPS receiver to use. Mine are all too

Jeff Liebermann
PO Box 272
Ben Lomond CA 95005-0272
Skype: JeffLiebermann AE6KS 831-336-2558
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