Use my location does not work when I move away from Wireless Router.

Discussion in 'iPad' started by Piggie, Nov 27, 2010.

  1. Piggie macrumors G3


    Feb 23, 2010
    Anyone know how this functions?

    A few apps ask if you wish to use your location.

    If I am near my wireless router, less than 10 feet away it works fine.

    If I move further away, perhaps in another room, now 20 feet away, I still get a good wireless signal and fast download speed test times, and yet now it cannot find my location.

    Has always been this way.
  2. Kauai macrumors 6502a

    Oct 13, 2010
    It's because it isn't finding your location it's finding the routers location. The only way you'll get a very accurate signal is if you have a 3G iPad with full assisted GPS.
  3. QuarterSwede macrumors G3


    Oct 1, 2005
    Colorado Springs, CO
    It can't find your location at all if you move away from the router and are still connected? Can you access the web from that distance?
  4. Piggie thread starter macrumors G3


    Feb 23, 2010
    Ok, I can accept that it's not actually finding my physical iPad location, but rather my Wireless router location.

    But my question is still the same.

    Why can't apps find my router location when my iPad is a little further away from the router?
  5. Piggie thread starter macrumors G3


    Feb 23, 2010

    Correct, I stand next to my wireless router and apps CAN find my location (or perhaps to be technically correct the location of the router)

    But if I move into another room (the signal then going through 1 or 2 walls about 15 feet away) and I can still get around 15 or 20 megabit download speeds.

    Then apps say they can't find my location.

    It confuses me. And as I said it's always been this way.

    I would of thought if I can still get a strong signal then there should be no difference.

    The signal may be a bit less due to distance and going through walls, but still plenty fast enough for online access from the iPad.
  6. Night Spring macrumors G5

    Night Spring

    Jul 17, 2008
    Not sure. Maybe the router signal needs to be stronger for the location service? Another possibility is that location service is not using your router, but a neighbor's router, to fix location. So your router could still be in range, but the neighbor's router has dropped out of range.
  7. Piggie thread starter macrumors G3


    Feb 23, 2010
    Perhaps you are right about the former point. Signal strength. Though I can still get 20 megabit download speed from the speedtest website test, so it's still very good, if not the absolute max I get standing right next.

    Perhaps it stepped down one notch if you know what I mean.

    On the neighbour front. there is no-one near me with wireless. certainly no other networks at all in range.
  8. eatbacon, Nov 27, 2010
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2010

    eatbacon macrumors regular

    Feb 4, 2003
    Is it possible your iPad can see another router (I don't think it has to connect to use location information) when you are close to your router, but not when you are in the other room?

    Is your router registered with skyhook?

    If not, I don't think your router can provide location information.

    EDIT: I apparently did not bother to read your last response.
  9. Piggie thread starter macrumors G3


    Feb 23, 2010
    I typed in my address and it came up ok.
    The position is a bit off but it's there.

    There are no other WiFi points around that I can find.
  10. eatbacon, Nov 27, 2010
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2010

    eatbacon macrumors regular

    Feb 4, 2003
    Your physical address came up on the map? But did you enter your MAC address? The map lookup just allows you to set the location of your router. Then you need to specify the MAC address of your router so it gets entered in their database.

    EDIT: also worth noting, it can take up to 7 days for the data you enter to be available.
  11. Piggie, Nov 27, 2010
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2010

    Piggie thread starter macrumors G3


    Feb 23, 2010
    No, I did not do that.

    Is there and privacy or security issue with submitting my MAC Address of my own Wireless Router?


    Is it my WAN or LAN Mac address that's needed by that site?

    Just looked. Seems like I need the Wireless MAC address for that site.

    But my question is the same, am I risking anything giving out my Wireless Mac address?
  12. Piggie thread starter macrumors G3


    Feb 23, 2010
    You know what.

    I am wondering. Just wondering if there may be something in what has been said about My router not being registered or another WiFi signal as when I do get a lock it puts my point on a house near me.

    but that said, I still don't understand as the info must be going to and from the system via my router?

    Again, I need to know if there and security info putting my WiFi mac address into that web site?

    I always thought you wanted to keep that secret?
  13. phyrexia macrumors 6502a

    Sep 3, 2010
    What happens when you are using a different wireless network?
  14. eatbacon macrumors regular

    Feb 4, 2003
    I do not claim to be a privacy expert, but here is what I understand to be true.

    Your wireless router broadcasts, among other things, your wireless MAC address every 100ms. Same goes for the other routers near you. You do not need to be connected to the network to pick up those broadcasts. So your iPad can pick up your neighbors broadcast, send a request to skyhook via your wireless network asking "where is this router?" and get a location. My understanding is that the iPad attempts to use as many wi-fi locations as possible to best triangulate your position.

    As for the privacy concerns, as I understand it, skyhook drives around listening for wi-fi broadcasts and recording the location in order to build their database, so giving them your information provides them nothing that they couldn't get on their own.

    Likely, a router in your neighborhood (perhaps close enough to occasionally hear the broadcast, but not strong enough to be listed as an available network) was picked up by skyhook's roaming and yours was not.
  15. Piggie thread starter macrumors G3


    Feb 23, 2010
    Thanks to you all for your advice.

    I have now submitted my address the skyhook and will see if it fix's my issue.

    I am thinking you may well be right as it gives my location as a house across the road. Though I can't see their wireless network to connect to unless I walk out into the road.

    But in my home when I can use the my location option it does give my location as this other house (200 feet away from where I am now)

    So you may well be right that, whilst the iPad cannot detect it as a network, somehow the skyhook thing may be?

    So everytime anyone in the world buys a new wireless router they have to submit this to the Skyhook people?

    I can't imagine hardly anyone does.
  16. eatbacon macrumors regular

    Feb 4, 2003
    As I mentioned, I think their database is mostly populated by them driving around scanning the world. Google does a similar thing locating wireless networks while they drive their street view cameras around. And they have been in hot water for collecting more information than they should have. Remember to keep your wireless network encrypted. :)

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