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How To Fake Your Location on Life360

Posted by Robert Hayes on December 7, 2019

Life360 is a family or group-centered location-sharing communication, chat, and driving safety tool designed to give families peace of mind about the location of their members. The idea is simple. The members of a family (or any group of mutually-communicating people, like a project team at an employer) install the app onto their smartphones; there is an iPhone client for iOS 11 and up as well as an Android app for Android 6+. The basic organizing principle of Life360 is the Circle, a group of people who share information and location accountability with one another. Once installed on your smartphone, you can invite other users into your Circle using their telephone number, e-mail address, or WhatsApp username. Each user installs the app and creates their own account.

Once users are in the same Circle, they can see one another’s location in the app on an updated real-time basis. One common use case for Life360 is a family where parents want to know where their children are. Other use cases include workgroups at large, remote job sites, and places where at-risk or cognitively challenged adults have some mobility in the community, but caregivers need to be able to keep track of their location. Life360 has become one of the most popular location-tracking apps, with more than a million downloads on Android and more than four hundred thousand downloads on iPhone.

Life 360 Features

The core functionality of Life360 is location tracking. Within the app, users can see the location of other members of their Circle on a scrolling map of the area. (If you want to change the name of your Circle, check out this tutorial.)The app provides notifications called Place Alerts when users arrive at or leave designated locations; for example, you can set up a notification to tell you when your children get to school, or when a coworker returns to the warehouse. Users can send out Help Alerts if they encounter an emergency, sending out a distress message to their designated emergency contact. Users can also conduct a Check-In, which allows them to send an alert to the Circle informing them of their exact location, and can view a location history for other members, showing where they have been in the past. There is an in-app chat feature that permits text conversations between the members of your Circle.

There are several tiers of premium services available with Life360. The basic level of the functionality described above is free. When any one account holder in the circle upgrades to a higher tier, all the users in that Circle get the benefits of the tier, for one subscription price. The next step up from the basic level is called Life360 Plus, which costs $2.99 per month or $24.99 per year. This allows you to set an unlimited number of Place Alerts (the basic subscription only allows 2 different Place Alerts), and also expands the location history feature from 2 days to 30 days. Life360 Plus also gives you access to premium customer support, and access to the Crime Reports feature, a database of crime incidents in your area which updates daily with new police reports. This allows you to check the relative safety of any given neighborhood where a Circle member might be planning to go.

The highest tier of Life360 is called Driver Protect, and it costs $7.99 per month or $69.99 per year in the United States. (Non-US customers qualify for a lower rate.) Driver Protect adds driver support services to your Circle, giving alerts when a driver is speeding, using the phone while driving, accelerating rapidly or using the brakes heavily.

In essence, it is a driving tattletale, very useful for parents of teenagers who may not yet be as safety-minded as Mom and Dad would like. In addition to the nanny features of Driver Protect, the app adds a crash detection feature that uses the phone’s sensors to detect a vehicular crash. If there is an accident, other Circle members will be informed and emergency services will be automatically called. This is a set of features that will be very reassuring for concerned parents.

Privacy Concerns

The main concern some users have about Life360 is that they perceive it interferes with their privacy. And of course, it does. Spouses can monitor one another’s movements, just as parents can watch over their children’s travels. If you say you’re heading straight home from work, Life360 will make it clear that in fact you stopped off at McElroy’s Tavern, and higher service tiers will even keep your history of debauchery on file for a month.

Is it possible to work around these privacy concerns? In a word, yes.

Can Life360 Read Texts?

Let’s briefly discuss some things that Life360 does not do. A lot of people are convinced that Life360 must be keeping a log with every mention of drugs or underage drinking games. There are probably users of the app that wish it did have this functionality, but at least for now LifeWedom is a respecter of privacy, at least in the sense of not going through your messages. Life360 does not have access to your SMS logs.

Suppress Your Location on Life360

Does Life360 Notify When Location Is Turned Off?

The simplest method for avoiding location tracking in Life360 is to turn the app off. Life360 is an opt-in app; it cannot be installed on someone’s phone in a configuration that always runs. Users can log out of the Life360 app, they can uninstall it, and they can interfere with the location tracking features of their phone to avoid being tracked. However, if you log out of Life360 or lose your data signal, your last known location will show on the map, along with an alert flag indicating that you are off the grid. The alert flag will disappear once your service is restored or you log back into the app.

For purposes of this article, I am assuming that this is an unacceptable method of turning off your location tracking. It isn’t our job to judge you; maybe you need to be untracked because you’re going to pick up the gift and the cake for your spouse’s surprise party, or maybe you have been secretly volunteering at a soup kitchen but don’t want your family to know about it.

Or maybe, you have a helicopter parent that watches everything you do or a jealous wife or husband that needs to know where you are at all times. We all have a right to our privacy, and being private doesn’t automatically mean wrong-doing. Regardless of why you want to suppress or spoof your location in Life360, I will show you how to best do that.

How do you Pause Location on Life360? – The Burner Sidestep

Probably the most straightforward method of providing false information to Life360 without looking like you’re evading the location tracking feature is to acquire a second phone, often referred to as a “burner” phone, and installing Life360 on it under the same account as you use on your primary phone. You log out of Life360 on your main phone, immediately log in to Life360 on the burner phone, and then leave the burner phone in a secure location so that it appears you are where you are supposed to be.

There are some potential problems with this strategy. One is that Life360 has a built-in chat function, and if people in your Circle use the chat function to talk to you…well, you and the burner phone aren’t in the same place, so you won’t see the chats and messages from your Circle will go unanswered by you. This could raise suspicions. Another problem is that keeping track of the secret burner phone is itself a difficult thing to securely manage if you are trying to avoid being detected in your sneaky activities. Still, the burner sidestep method is easy to implement and reliable in execution.

Why does Life360 Show Wrong Location – Spoof Your GPS (Android)

The GPS feature of your smartphone works by receiving radio signals from a fleet of satellites orbiting the Earth. Nearly every smartphone has this feature, and it allows your phone to know your location to a remarkably fine degree of accuracy – even a basic smartphone GPS can generally place itself within about 15 feet of its actual location on the map. It isn’t really possible to fool the GPS satellite network; your phone knows where it is and there isn’t anything you can do about that. However, Android smartphones are highly configurable devices, and what you can do is instruct the Android software to ignore the information it’s getting from the GPS sensors, and instead substitute information provided by an app.

Setting this up is a multistage process. It’s a bit involved, but not difficult.

The first thing you will need is the Fake GPS Location app from the Play Store. There are other apps and you can use whichever app you choose, but we’ve tested this one and it is very solid. Although it has a rather dated interface, it is reliable and glitch-free. Install the Fake GPS Location app and then leave it for now.

The next step is to enable developer settings on your Android phone. Developer settings are a menu option on Android phones that tells the phone you are running experimental software or hardware. In essence, it lowers some security settings so that you can run tricky programs like the Fake GPS Location app. I’m providing instructions here for an Android phone running Android 8.1 (Oreo) but the steps for performing these tasks should be broadly the same across any Android phone.

Here’s how to turn developer settings on.

  1. Open the Settings menu on your phone.
  2. Tap System.
  3. Tap About Phone.
  4. Tap Software Info.
  5. Tap Build Number 7 times quickly.
  6. Enter your phone’s lock code when prompted.

You now have access to the Developer Mode settings page under Settings->System->Developer Options.

Toggle Developer on if it didn’t turn itself on automatically and you’re ready to go.

The next step is to install the Fake GPS Location app from the Google Play store if you haven’t already.

Now you need to tell your phone to use the Fake GPS Location app as its GPS device.

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Tap on System.
  3. Tap on Developer Options.
  4. Scroll down to “Select mock location app” and tap on it.
  5. Select the Fake GPS app.

That’s all there is to it.

Setting your location within Life360 is now easy. Just open the Fake GPS Location app and navigate to where you want your location to be. Hit the green Play button, and your phone now believes you to be wherever you have navigated to on the map.

You should be able to verify that everything is working by opening Life360 and seeing where you are showing on the map. It should be the same spot you’ve set the Fake GPS Location app to indicate.

Spoof Your GPS (iPhone)

Location spoofing is a lot trickier on the iPhone. It isn’t that iPhones are any less capable than Android smartphones, but the iOS operating system is much more locked down and doesn’t permit you to play reindeer games the way Android does. On older iPhones, you can perform a procedure called “jailbreaking” which basically shuts down the portions of iOS dedicated to preventing you from having any fun. However, recent iPhones are no longer jailbreakable. However, there is still a way to spoof your GPS location on the iPhone, although it is more difficult and less flexible.

There are no free programs that will spoof a GPS location on your iPhone, but there is a commercial program called iTools which will allow you to do that. iTools does things besides GPS spoofing, but that’s the only program feature we’ll talk about today. iTools is not free, although you can get a trial for a few days to test it out. A single-user license for iTools costs $30.95. In addition, you run iTools on a Windows PC or a desktop Mac computer, and then connect your iPhone to the computer via a data cable, as though you were using iTunes. This means that your iPhone will be staying with your PC, not coming with you on your secret adventure.

Once you have iTools installed, follow these steps to set up GPS spoofing on your iPhone.

  1. Click the Toolbox icon on the iTools panel.
  2. Click the Virtual Location button on the Toolbox panel.
  3. Enter the location you want to spoof your location to in the text box and click “Move Here”.
  4. Go to Bumble on your phone and do whatever you wish to do in your “new” location.
  5. To end the GPS spoofing, select “Stop Simulation” in iTools.

It isn’t as elegant a solution as the Android platform offers, but it will get the job done.

(Want to either extend the tracking concept to your vehicles or back a little bit off the full-bore commitment to Life360? You can do that with the handy Bouncie vehicle GPS tracker. Know where your vehicle is, and you probably know where your kids are.

Those are the three basic approaches you can use to trick Life360 into thinking you are somewhere you aren’t. You can turn it off, you can use a burner phone as a decoy, or you can use GPS spoofing to mislead the app. Do you have any other methods for bypassing Life360’s location tracking? Share them with us in the comments section below!

We have other spoofing and GPS-related resources to help you stay on top of your location game.

Interested in making phone calls with a faked caller ID number? Check out our guide to spoofing caller ID on a phone call.

We have a tutorial on spoofing your location in Snapchat.

If you use Google Maps, here’s our walkthrough for spoofing your location on Google Maps.

Here’s our tutorial for changing your GPS location in Bumble, and another article on changing your GPS location for Tinder.

 

 

 

22 thoughts on “How To Fake Your Location on Life360”

Leslie says:
How long will the fake gps last from the moment you have it running ?
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Sam c says:
Can you delete the app off your main phone to avoid the notification that you turn 360 off. Then turn on your burner phone with the 360 app to show your location. Then take your main phone in case you get a call. Down side you have to return to get your burner phone and remember to redown load the 360 app. Plus turn off your burner phone. Lol
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Sam says:
Can you delete the app off your main phone to avoid the notification that you turn 360 off. Then turn on your burner phone with the 360 app to show your location. Then take your main phone in case you get a call. Down side you have to return to get your burner phone and remember to redown load the 360 app. Plus turn off your burner phone. Lol
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Andy says:
I’m wondering how to spoof the actual movement from one place to the fake location? They can see the exact route I drive or walk so how does that part get spoofed? How do I make it look like I drove from one place to the fake location?
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Brina says:
Quit being shady and you wouldn’ t have to worry about it.
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Amanda rodriguez says:
Maybe it’s not being shady and your in a relationship that is dangerous and sometimes the police can’t help and your scared … don’t judge before knowing the reasoning
Dave says:
Only issue with a Burner Phone is that the owner of the Circle gets notified every time you log off and on – so they can see when you log off original phone and log on burner phone….
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Kristina Kittensworth says:
I had a question. If my signal bars are all gone like this and said “no signal”, will Fake GPS location is still working while it was on and pinpoint my fake location in my Life360 map app? This is in case when I’m riding an underground Metro red line train where the signal bars in my phone will disappear. I need to keep my fake pinpoint location stay still on my place like college where I sneak out to go places I need to go whenever I had no classes.

When I got out of the Metro red line train and arrived in the town plaza before my phone signal bars reappear to work again, will my fake pinpoint location by Fake GPS Location app still working and still pinpoint my same fake location pinpointed in college so my family will not know that I go out and sneak off to somewhere where I want to be at like Universal Studios Hollywood where the people need me there instead of college where my classes are over?

I’m 25 years old, but my family got Life360 apps together and they have gone overprotective to me. Whenever I finish my classes and no classes in my college, I need to sneak out to Universal Studios Hollywood theme park and anywhere I wanted to go without getting caught and without my family knowing if they are gonna keep locating and tracking me.

Reply
anna says:
How do you use a VPN with life360
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Evan says:
You are mistaken about jailbreaking. I’m on an iPhone XR running iOS 12.1.1 and perfectly jail broken. And a jailbreak has been achieved many times in iOS 13. Just waiting for release. iPhone 11 is about to have a jailbreak too.
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Kiki says:
What are the bubbles above the persons head on life 360? I always assumed it was my husband using his phone or texting but he states it is not always true.
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Batgirl says:
I realized it means it’s just the app trying to detect a user’s speed. It takes a few seconds for it to appear.
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Yeahyeahight says:
Whenever I party or go out without my parents’ knowledge, I turn my background-app refresh off and my motion & fitness. This way I can still use my cellular data and I don’t ever get caught, because my mother is always refreshing and searching for my location.
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Grace LeBeau says:
Ive tried this before and it doesnt work it still will show my location where ever i am in the moment.
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Tammy says:
If I turn off my WiFi on my iPhone, will my Life360 ap not track my movements?
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Angel says:
You can also put phone on battery saver
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Rachel says:
Is there a way to have it track my phone less times in a day? Like once per hour or something. My phone tells me it has used my location 63+ times in the last few hours!! There drains my battery
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Robert says:
Why does my wife’s Life360 show off line Battery on phone is dead so no location? And I know that phone battery is not dead!
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Mr Tony Farthing says:
My wife’s phone does exactly the same and I cannot find a solution to this
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MagicMan says:
Divorce
Kristin says:
For iphone turn off cellular, wifi, and background app refresh. Make sure you close completed put of the app as well and do NOT go back on it until you are back in the location you need to be back in. Youre welcome.
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Toni says:
Do I have to turn off cellular? My phone doesn’t work then does it?
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Jen says:
If you do this, it will show in the app that your location services are disabled. This wasn’t the case 3 months ago but it seems they updated it and now it shows
Richard says:
After reading this, I concluded that Life360 tracks by GPS.

I thought at first that Life360 tracks my location through my phone network…thinking via radio waves transmitted between microwave antennas and then through triangulating. So I replaced my original phone number with another phone number and left this phone in a 2nd location. I still see in the map where I am which is the same location that my original phone is at.

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BigPete says:
Just wondering if I have an iPad running life 360, can I use that like the burner phone you mentioned? Turn location off on my iPhone then turn on location on iPad (which is running life 360) and leave iPad at home ??
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Kris says:
My 360 app is a nightmare. I’m 25, but my requested that I download it so she could help me out somewhere if need be.

I arrived home at 7:44p.m. and got a shower. I stepped out at 10:45 to make a phone call that lasted all of 5 minutes, and then went into the house and went to bed, (I’m visiting my parents). I woke up around 2 a.m. because I heard my brother on law get back from work, then crashed again. I get up this morning to my mother and sister interrogating me on where I drove last night. This app showed I left at 1 a.m, drove to my BIL’s cousins house(???) And then came back home and left again at 4:30 a.m. towards a city an hour away, and came back at 10:35 this morning. I asked how they were getting this and my sister said her husband saw me leave with someone(??????). And then my mom kept waiting for me to explain and said “you had to be gone, because I ran into the guest room at 6 a.m. freaking out and almost woke you up. This app is garbage

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EC says:
did you ever figure why you getting false & moving locations??
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Terry says:
My life 360 says never and can’t get it to always
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ThaiGirlSlayer says:
If your going to do option #1 you might as well use one of your “old” iPhones and use that as your “burner”. If you enable iCloud, you can still respond to text messages from where ever you are. No need to do the whole trusted-friend thing.
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Keith Petron says:
The fake gps is not showing on life 360 or find a friend. Any advice?
Reply
Keith Petron says:
Is there a way to use the fake gps to fake my location on life360 and find friends
Reply

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This Guide Last Updated: December 7, 2019

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