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What happens To your Bumble Location if your Phone is Off?

Posted by Jessie Richardson on May 28, 2019

Location tracking is a concern for most people who use apps with the feature. From Snapchat to Facebook, Bumble to Tinder, many apps base some of their features around location. Let’s discuss Bumble in more detail, specifically what happens to your Bumble location if your phone is off.

Even a quick internet search shows lots of questions about Bumble location tracking. Where, where and how location is tracked. How often it is updated, how to stop it tracking and so on. I have collected the most popular questions out of those and have collated them into a single piece around Bumble and locations. All so you don’t have to scour the internet for your answers.

Dating apps and location

Dating apps like Bumble, Tinder, Hinge and others all require your location to show you matches where you are right now. It makes sense to only show you potential dates that are actually accessible and are an important aspect of these apps. After all, there’s no point showing you a match if it would take a transatlantic flight to have a date now would it?

So the location element makes sense, but so does learning how it is used and how your location is identified and used.

Does Bumble track location if your phone is off?

If your phone is off, Bumble cannot track you. It uses GPS, cell tower data or WiFi data to find out where you are. The app isn’t functional when the phone is off. Your phone’s GPS isn’t functional while it is powered off and cell tower data is not available when a phone is not pinging the cell towers. So no, it is not possible for Bumble or any dating app to track your location when you turn your phone off.

Apps with location features cannot track your location when you close the app either. If you want some privacy and don’t want Bumble to know where you are, just shut the app down. That includes force closing it in Android. That way, it cannot talk to your phone aerial or GPS chip to locate you. The same with Snap Maps and non-dating apps. Shut the app down completely and it will not track you.

When you start the app back up again, it may ping your current location to the Bumble server to update it. It will use either GPS or cell positioning to pinpoint as accurately as possible and report that. Again, this is in the interests of getting your local matches rather than spying on you.

Can you opt out of location tracking in Bumble?

Unfortunately, Bumble does not have a version of Ghost mode that Snap Maps does. Older versions of Bumble did allow you to turn off location but since a recent update, there is no option to do this anymore.

Location is an integral part of how the app works and for the reasons explained above, needs to know where you are at any given time. It doesn’t need to know exactly where you are, just in what town, district or neighborhood so it can show matches in close proximity.

You cannot opt out of location tracking and use dating apps to their full potential and the only way to not be tracked is to not use Bumble during that time. All dating apps will do exactly the same to one degree or another so it isn’t just Bumble.

You have some control over it, sort of. You can remove permission for Bumble to access your phone location data. It’s clumsy as you will have to allow and disallow this access whenever you use the app. In Android, select Settings, Apps and Bumble. Then select App Settings and Permissions. You can control access from there. I assume iOS will have something similar.

Can you spoof your location in Bumble?

You can perhaps spoof your location in Bumble. Dating apps are getting wise to this but using a VPN and connecting via Wifi with GPS turned off can set your location somewhere other than where you are. There are also GPS spoofing apps around that can do the same thing.

A word of caution though, app developers know these tricks too and not all of them work. As Bumble also uses cell tower location as well as GPS and WiFi, you may need to go off grid completely to fool it into thinking you’re somewhere else.

You may view location tracking with suspicion but in this case it is to allow Bumble to show you matches close to where you are. As far as we know, there is no ulterior motive for wanting to know where you are and if you want to use dating apps you have better get used to be tracked like this!

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