Location Services on your iPad; what you need to know

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When it comes to electronic devices, especially mobile phones, the big big buzz word these day is privacy.  Makes sense, it’s a big deal.  Almost as important as privacy is how you mange your privacy settings.  Personalizing settings to fit your lifestyle and needs can be cumbersome and consuming.  If users are confused or overwhelmed they are much less likely to reap the benefits of being able to keep their information safe and private.  When privacy is sacrificed at the hands of convenience bad things can happen to good people.

One of  the more configureable settings on your iPad that can impact your privacy is Location Services.  Location based services are a hot topic because they can be very helpful in predicting our needs and preparing us for upcoming events.  However they can also become intrusive if given too much access–it just depends on what your expectations are and how informed you are from the beginning.  To make it easier, let’s walk through his to configure Location Services your iPad.

Privacy Settings on the iPad

Here’s how you configure your own Location Services on your iPad.  Start by opening the Settings App–> Privacy–> Location Services.  If not already on, slide the tab over to activate.  Location services use Bluetooth and crowd sourced Wi-fi locations to determine your location, so obviously these settings need to be turned on as well to best determine your location.


To share your location with other members of your Family and friends in Messages and Find My Friends. Once you open this option up you can select which one of your available devices you’d like to share your location from.  By enabling Location Services on you iPad, you are essentially granting consent to having your info transmitted, collection, maintenance, and processed by Apple and its partners.  Rest assured-all data is anonymous and Apple will not share or sell your data with outside agencies

Granting Individual Apps Permission

As you progress through and grant different apps permission to use your location, they appear in a running list on the main Location Services page.  Its at this page where you can adjust when each app uses you location.  Options range from While Using, Always and Never.  These can be adjusted as often as you like at anytime you choose.


In addition, an arrow will appear next to the app in the list to indicate when your location was most recently used.

  • A purple icon (arrow) indicates that your location was recently used
  • A gray icon indicates that your location was used within the last 24 hours
  • An outlined purple icon will indicate that an app is currently using a a geofence ( a virtual perimeter around a location used to notify you when you arrive or leave a location)

Lastly, you can also configure a variety of System Services that use location services to collect information.  They include the Compass, Find-My-iPad, Alerts, iAds, Time Zone, Share My Location, Spotlight suggestions, Wi-Fi Networking, and Frequent Locations.  This is also a very good place to start when you are looking to improve your battery life as you will be able to monitor usage.

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