GPS not working (android)

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Regular Contributor
This is mainly an android (v4 - v11) problem but also happens on iphones.
You can find thousands of threads via google going 15 years back without any one-way solution, blamed on software and hardware 50/50.
Personally I've been having this battle as well even going as far to replacing all antenna's which worked for about 6 months and then I was back to zero (which fits the theory about 4g signal flooding and interfering with gps combined with the ever expanding number of masts and/or higher signal output).

There are specialized forums about this but there are many and not really in a mood to register everywhere so lets see how far I get here.

What I find interesting is that many 'solutions' go about flight-mode on/off and gps on/off to kick start gps function, where I noticed when I'm on the African continent and force 3g usage over 4g usage my gps works most of the time.

So I did a little test (again) using the common gps android tools to see how many sats it sees and how many get locked.
With 4g on I see 30+ sats and between 0-3 locks which quickly go to zero and stay zero for minutes, but when I switch 4g off I get 5-13 locks and that stays locked continuously.

This behavior fits what I experience in Africa (as 4g drains my battery 10x faster then 3g and is why over there I always go back to 3g) here in EU 3g is nearly phased out so no option to do this here.

After years of having this issue with many phones I decided to get a Qstarz BT-Q818XT (gps via bluetooth) which solves this permanently, but it does lead me into a conclusion 4g (either on the phone or the 4g provider masts) is causing interference. (see my note about flight-mode on/off and gps on/off to kick start gps).

Notes about gps vs. gsm interference:

My question here is, can anyone find a way to debunk or confirm this?


Occasional Visitor
GPS in a mobile device can fail for a number of reasons. When it does fail the fact that for some folks it's not "mission-critical" means that not everyone will even notice, let alone complain. Some of those failures are simply the result of rough usage - so people who have to replace the screen on their phone(s) regularly are also likely to suffer from degraded WiFi, mobile signals, Bluetooth, and GPS - it's just that the screen being damaged is obvious!

As for debunking the two last items you mention: I'd suggest tuning your powers of scepticism! Where you have an article listing established PHYSICS that you can check, it shouldn't be too hard. On the other hand, if the links are to some obscure unverifiable source it's probably not even worth the weight of the electrons it took to convey the message to your screen!

*And this is probably not the right forum for such questions!


Very Senior Member
This is mainly an android (v4 - v11) problem but also happens on iphones.

Last time I had phone GPS issues was with original Samsung Galaxy S Captivate from 2010 when playing with multiple custom ROMs for it.
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