After visiting the location settings we see two similar options, both mentioning improving the location accuracy using WiFi and Bluetooth.

The "Improve accuracy" option is part of the system dialog in the location settings and contains two switches ("WiFi scanning" and "Bluetooth scanning").

The "Google Location Accuracy" is part of "Location Services" list and contains one switch ("Improve location accuracy"). Toggling one setting does not automatically toggle the other so they appear to be separate.

What's the difference?

1 Answer 1


It seems that Google's location accuracy uses a combination of:

  • GPS
  • Wi-Fi
  • Mobile networks, and
  • Sensors (such as an accelerometer)

In contrast, Wi-Fi scanning most likely uses more than just your own Wi-Fi and uses other Wi-Fi signals (which is why it says it works offline) from around you to identify your location.

In general, Google's location service works better. If you're worried about battery usage all the time like I do, I would say the difference in turning either on is negligible as long as a service is not using your location. You'll know this if you see the location icon in the status bar.


  • 1
    But if the Wi-Fi scanning does not use Google's services (as that's a system feature, not google location accuracy feature), where does it get the data for Wi-Fi scanning from? Phones coming with a huge list of Wi-Fi hotspots preloaded would be pretty ridiculous. Dec 5, 2021 at 19:57

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