I want to know how GPS works on android phone. Does it send any identification data to service providers/phone manufacturers/Map providers?

I recently read a new about IPhone tracking users - http://techcrunch.com/2011/04/21/apple-tracking-location-database/.

I am using Samsung android phone. How can be sure that nobody is tracking me even if I keep my GPS on for my running app tracking?


  • 3
    One of the major rules in security: When you allow access, assume that access will be abused. You can't use GPS without the possibility of apps, your phone, the GPS satellites, etc. tracking you. Commented Apr 24, 2011 at 13:35
  • If your phone is on, your carrier knows where you are. The only way to not be tracked is to leave your phone off and at home.
    – ale
    Commented Apr 28, 2011 at 15:00

1 Answer 1


If you enabled "My Location" in Settings > Location & Security > Use wireless networks then your Cell/Wifi and/or GPS data will be sent to Google to triangulate your location if there is an application in the phone that requested for location. Your GPS data may also be sent to Google if you're using Google Latitude, Google Navigation, location-aware search, or use other location-based services.

Third party applications may also track your location, read their privacy policy before installing those applications if you're concerned.

EDIT: According to Android Central

Android does the same sort of thing, boys and girls. And it's supposed to. But it does it right. Instead of saving days and weeks and months of location data, it saves the 50 most recent cellular GPS locations, and 200 most recent Wifi fixes. And it's stored in a little file on your phone.


You can shut off Android's location services and stop further caching of location data. It's in Settings>Location & Security.

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