Mallow's Blog

Updates to Location Permissions in iOS 13

Back in June, Apple announced several major changes for location permissions in iOS 13 which was released in September. These changes are useful to end-users, that provides them a greater control and transparency on how apps are using their location

Location service

When the app needs to access your Location Services information for the first time, you’ll get a notification asking for permission. These are the options you can choose :

  • Tap the ‘Allow’ option to let the app use Location Services information as needed. 
  • Tap the ‘Don’t Allow’ option, to prevent access.
  • Tap the ‘Ask Next Time’ option, to choose Always While Using App, Allow Once, or Don’t Allow.

Wi-Fi and Bluetooth might be considered by iOS, to determine your location. In the iPhone and iPad (Wi-Fi + Cellular) models, GPS and cellular locations are present.


Apple uses location service for the following stuff that helps us in our daily life and makes it simple, they are :

  • Maps (directions)
  • Camera (place )
  • Weather

Four significant changes have been done in the recent version and they are:

  • ‘Always Allow’ User-Flow (it has been updated)
  • ‘Allow Once’ Permission
  • Location Permission Map
  • Bluetooth Permissions

Always Allow :

By choosing this “always allow” option we grant the app ‘background‘ location access, and the location is automatically accessed without the user’s permission.

Allow once :

This option allows the app one-time permission to use their location, ie whenever you open the app it gives access for that particular session.

Location permission map :

For apps that have granted the Always Allow location permissions, iOS 13 will periodically display a “map prompt”. The location points collected by the app, are displayed by the “map prompt”. In testing, they have identified that this prompt will be triggered after 3 consecutive days of background location use, and will continue to appear periodically with continued use.

  • Background location use :

If you give an app the permission to access your precise location, while it’s in use, the app then asks another prompt to know where you are at all times. In these cases, you will get a second prompt for permission to access the location even when you are not using the application.

There are two options below,

  1. Keep Only While Using :
    This option gives the app, permission to access the exact location, but only when the app is running.
  2. Change to Always Allow :
    This gives the app permission to access your accurate location always.
Background location use

Bluetooth permission :

iOS 13 will now show a specific permission prompt when an app attempts to access any Bluetooth service. Apps created for iOS 12, now running on 13, will trigger a generic version of the Bluetooth prompt

To avoid unnecessary Bluetooth permission prompts, initiate and access Bluetooth iOS services only if and when your app needs them.

I hope you might have got an idea on the updates made on the location permissions in iOS 13. Let us see some more interesting topics in the future blogs.

-Karthick N,
iOS Team,
Mallow Technologies.

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