How to check if the GPS is working

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How to check if GPS works on Android

You have a device at your disposal Android and you want to know how to check if the GPS is working on the latter? Then know that you can succeed in your intent both by using special codes, which allow you to access a menu regarding the correct functioning of the sensors, and by contacting some third-party apps: you will find everything explained in detail right below.


Secret codes


As mentioned above, you can check the status of the GPS on Android by making use of some secret codes that allow you to access advanced menus of the operating system.

To proceed, start the app TelephoneI agreed to keypad by tapping the button Dial (please note that the wording may be slightly different based on the brand and model of device in use and the version of Android installed on it) and enter the code  * # * # * # * # 4636. If the code in question doesn't work, try the code * # 0 * # or with the code # 7378423 # * # *.

After being able to enter the Android secret menu, select the item Sensor test / Service test / Info telefono (depends on the terminal in your possession) and, in the screen that opens, presses the item corresponding to the GPS test (eg. GPS). If an error message appears, the GPS may actually have some malfunction.

App to test GPS

Alternatively, to check the operating status of the GPS sensor, you can rely on some third-party app which are free, easy to use and extremely useful for the purpose: let me tell you about them in detail.



A delle migliori soluzioni di questo type è GPS Test. As easily understood from its name, this application was created with the aim of carrying out tests regarding the functioning of the GPS, but also integrates some useful functions that allow it to be used as a navigator (these, however, are included only in its paid version. , which costs 4,99 euros). It also allows you to perform tests to determine the intensity of the GPS signal, the number of satellites that the device can detect, the accuracy of the position and much more.

After installing and starting GPS Test on your device, tap on the item Allow, to allow the app to access the location of the device (essential to make it work), then press the button (≡) located at the top left and select the item GPS give the menu check if you press.

Now, to make sure the GPS is working, you just need to pay attention to the bar chart which is present on the main screen of the app (if you don't see it, tap the button 3D fix located at the bottom left).

If the colored bars of the histogram (each of which corresponds to a satellite to which the GPS has managed to lock onto) are all Red, obviously the sensor is not able to detect the exact position of the device and may actually have some operating problems (please note that this could also be due to poor coverage).

If, on the other hand, the bars are Orange colour, the GPS signal is detected, but it appears to be quite poor: this may be due to the fact that you are in an area that makes it difficult to track the position (e.g. inside a building, inside a tunnel, in a forest and so on). If the bars are yellow and / or green color, on the other hand, the signal is optimal.



Check if GPS works on iPhone

You have a iPhone and would you like to check the correct functioning of the GPS sensor? Unlike what we saw in the chapter on Android, on the smartphone produced by Apple there is no possibility to verify the operation of the GPS through the use of secret codes, but it is possible to do all the necessary tests through third-party app.

One of the best on the square is GPS Status, whose operation is quite simple: once started, it automatically checks the functioning of the GPS. If everything is normal, the application determines the location of the device and shows it, via GPS coordinates. If, on the other hand, there are problems, the coordinates will not be available.

After installing and starting GPS Status, then tap the button Allow, in order to allow the app to access your location, then pay attention to the coordinates indicated in the text fields Latitude e Longitude: If you do not see any information, the GPS may not be working.

If, on the other hand, you see the GPS coordinates, check that they are correct: maybe you can do it using navigation apps, such as Google Maps (in this other guide I explained how to do this). If the coordinates correspond, even approximately, to your position, it means that the GPS is working correctly.

Check if the GPS works in the car

You have come to this guide for check if the GPS works in the car? No problem: even if I cannot provide you with specific instructions in this regard, since the procedures to follow vary significantly according to the brand and model of satellite navigator in your possession, know that this is a very simple operation to carry out.



First of all, keep in mind that satellite navigators usually take 2 to 5 minutes to find the GPS signal. If, after waiting for a few minutes, the navigator continues to search for the signal without success, there may actually be some problem with the sensor. The same applies if a error message (which could also report a code dating back to the specific problem encountered) and / or if theposition indicator is gray or transparent.

On the contrary, if after a few minutes from its ignition, the navigator has managed to find the GPS signal, no error message appears and the indicator is placed in correspondence with the position in which you are actually located, it means that the GPS built into the device is functional.

Please note: if you have moved to a different location since the last use of the navigator and have traveled a significant distance (e.g. you have traveled hundreds or thousands of kilometers by plane or train), it may take up to 45-50 minutes to switch on the device to find the GPS position.

What to do in case of problems

From reading the previous chapters, have you come to the conclusion that the GPS integrated in your smartphone / tablet or in your car satellite navigator is not working properly? If this is due to a software problem, you may be able to fix it by restarting the device or updating the operating system.

If, on the other hand, you suspect that the problem is of hardware origin, you would do well to contact the manufacturer of the device and request assistance. Below I will illustrate in detail all the possible solutions available to you.

  • Update the software - since the GPS malfunction could be due to a system bug (i.e. an error in the operating system code), make sure you have updated Android, iOS or your navigator software to the latest software version available.
  • Reboot the device - turn off and on your smartphone (if you don't know how to do it, read the insights in which I explain how to restart Android and how to restart iPhone) or your car navigator. When you turn it back on, make sure your device can find your GPS location.
  • Reset the device - this is an operation that restores the device to its factory state, permanently deleting all the data on it (unless a backup has been made in advance). It is used to resolve any software conflicts that could be at the origin of the GPS sensor malfunction. I have explained to you how to reset Android and how to reset iPhone in the tutorials that I just linked to you. As for the car navigator, refer to the instructions in its user manual.
  • Contact the manufacturer of the device - if the indications presented in the previous points did not help solve the problems encountered with the GPS, there may be some hardware malfunction. In that case, I suggest you contact your device manufacturer's support as soon as possible.
How to check if the GPS is working


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