Problems with iPhone 3G GPS positioning? Here is the answer.

The Apple iPhone 3G seems to be having a few problems, no really? Yes, especially with the GPS hardware apparently. The iPhone 3G’s GPS hardware gets into trouble when connected to the AT&T 3G network.

The guys at iPhone Atlas report that some iPhone 3G users are moaning about inaccurate GPS positioning when the 3G data setting option is turned on.

As most know, the iPhone 3G uses aGPS which is assisted GPS so means the mobile network aids in positioning the mobile handset and giving the GPS hardware less to deal with. This means super fast GPS lock on.

However, it appears that some iPhone’s are receiving conflicting data from the 3G data network and the built-in GPS receivers thus leading to incorrect GPS positioning.

So here’s a fix from the iPhone Atlas guys: Go to settings, general, network, enable 3G and toggle off. Next locate yourself using the iPhone 3G’s GPS receiver, and then go to settings, general, network, enable 3G and toggle on.

This should now make your iPhone GPS accurate. However, if it doesn’t work drop us a comment saying so.


11 thoughts on “Problems with iPhone 3G GPS positioning? Here is the answer.”

  1. Dave says:

    That works, but seems that I will need to do that every time I want to use the GPS = not very convenient. I hope they are working on a fix for this.

  2. Liam says:

    This improved things slightly but still not as accurate as the first time I used it which was totally spot on. Just seemed to stop working for some reason.

  3. phil says:

    Hi, I’ve got problems with my gps, it started when I went into an area with 3g and its not been right since.
    sometimes when I reset network settings it sorts it out for a short time.
    but still not right.
    What do you mean when you say toggle on and toggle off ?

  4. ans says:

    toggle means switch it on or of. by using ur finger

    i am so sick of this gps it is not working tried everything its obvious there is a problem with the hardware and software apple should fix this theres over a 100 people just on google complaining rather by a tom tom and glue a mobile to it

  5. ok this seems to work when your outside in a clear area,but when i go back into the office at my desk it then postions me 10-20 mins walk from my postion. It also helps if you have your wifi on however this gives the postion off the wifi signal i.e someones house.

    I now have the new iphone 3GS and we are still having issues.

    1. mark says:

      Daniel gps will not work in the office. If there isn't a clear line of site to the orbiting satellites then the phone will use the phone network exclusively to position you. This is based on triangulation with the 3 nearest cell masts and i believe is only accurate to +/- 100m

  6. YO_bee says:

    I have the 3Gs and tried all the listed above.
    I had a 2nd Gen 3g model prior to this and had no issues with the gps.
    I also replaced the phone and I am still getting false readings some are 100 + yards off. I am not sure what it is, but they better resolve it since they pride their apps that support locator services. 🙁

  7. mike says:

    i am having the same problem as yo_bee with iphone 3gs, i can only get signal in certain sections of my city and its not very accurated, i am using sygic maps app for iphone and the gps singal (when it actually gets signal which is not very often) is always weak.

    i have tried many things like the soft reset, and still not working…

    could it be that my iphone’s hardware is defective? or is it just some software issue?

  8. Warren, Kent, UK says:


    I have a 2yr old iPhone and today bought a new 3GS. The old iPhone locates me outside within 16ft and indoors within 30feet. The new iPhone is 0.8 miles out as I sit here with both on my lap. The old iPhone is still bang on. The GPS function is the only reason I use an iPhone, (for Geocaching and Marine Navigation). I've tried the workaround but it makes no difference. It's a hardware fault and poor quality control. I'll be going back to the shop tomorrow to swap it for one that works.

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