Android Auto Plagued by GPS Problems on Samsung Smartphones

GPS struggles on Android Auto are nothing new, but more recently, more and more Samsung users have started complaining of similar issues that end up breaking down navigation apps.
Samsung phones suffering from poor GPS signal on AA 1 photo
While this isn’t the first time we’re reporting about GPS problems on Android Auto, after the most recent updates, we’ve noticed a pattern that most often involves Samsung devices. In other words, the problem that breaks down the GPS in Android Auto might not necessarily come down to the app but to Samsung’s smartphones, and some believe that recent system updates are to blame.

More specifically, a discussion thread on Google’s forums dissects these GPS errors on Android Auto, and in most of the cases, both Waze and Google Maps are obviously blocked from providing correct navigation instructions to users.

All people who confirmed a similar behavior on their devices indicate the whole thing happens on a Samsung device, but oddly enough, navigation apps seem to be running correctly without Android Auto loaded on the car’s head unit. Some, however, explain that the GPS problems appeared after Samsung shipped new updates to their devices, so the trouble could eventually be caused by a compatibility issue between this new OS update and Android Auto.

I have been experiencing this problem since around May (Galaxy Note 8, T-Mobile). Until today, I was always able to do a quick toggle off and on of the Location service, and the GPS came right back on. This morning I got a system update, and now even that work-around does not work anymore. It appears that the problem is also evident on the new Samsung phones,” someone explains on the forums.

Google has already confirmed it’s looking into the bug, while Samsung has so far remained completely tight-lipped on these GPS problems that affect the experience on Android Auto.

As for a workaround, there’s not much you can try right now, as downgrading Android Auto to an older version doesn’t seem to improve the GPS connection by any means. We have reached out to Samsung for additional information and will post a follow-up should an answer be offered.


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