Pros and Cons of using Geocoded Location

I’m privacy-minded, so I don’t allow most apps to track my phone’s location. HA is one such app, because while I appreciate the great work the community is doing to empower the HA enthusiast, I still don’t want to provide my precise location to third parties. I wonder, for those who do allow GPS tracking via their HA app, how has the experience been? And, is there a privacy policy in place regarding GPS tracking that I am not aware of?

Great, I can’t say much more.
It gives us precise positioning and can be used for multiple automations.

Don’t know. All I know is that the location comes from “Google” and and goes to my HA server via HTTPS.
Google would already know my location, so no difference there (in my case)

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HA is literally one of the least onerous of your options. If you don’t like what they’re doing you might as well turn off the GPS on your phone.

Where does the data come from?
GPS tracking on your device. (As to reliability it’s exactly as accurate as your device reports it to be.)

Where does it go to?
If you’re a Nabu Casa user:
GPS tracking > App > Nabu Casa (Proxy) > YOUR HA Install.
In that case relevant privacy statements are from Nabu Casa: Privacy (

If you’re NOT a Nabu Casa User:
GPS > App > YOUR HA install. Maybe your own proxy, Like NGINX/DuckDNS but, again - your installs

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Just a few notes in addition to the above comments.

  1. Geocoded location is not the same as device tracking. Geocoded location uses the same Last Location API information from Google Services. It takes those last coordinates into an Android Geocoder API (not related to google services) and converts the coordinates into an address

  2. Location tracking uses Googles Fused Location services which is something your device already does when you use google maps navigation or anything else that requires GPS and uses google services. In this case the companion app requests google to send it location data based on a specified interval. It also gets passive location updates so if you were using google maps navigation those updates will also come to the app.

The only third party here (if you call it a third party) is google other than that the data is sent according to the comment above this.

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I have a similar question to this. I enabled geocoded location thinking it was the standard (I now understand it’s an alternative/additional) but it shows separately to the user on the map - why would this be?
And am I adding any value using both?

Known issue with the HA frontend

No your not

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Cool. Will turn it off then :+1:t2:

So, I’ve not been using this long but after turning it off (note I didn’t really test it long with it on) I’ve been seeing some odd fluctuations on my wife’s device

She’ll be sitting on the sofa and I’ll get the notification telling me that she’s left and then come back a second later
Any ideas why this might be and would that other setting solve this? Or do I need to find some secondary method to identify location (E.g WiFi connection)?

Most likely your home zone is too small.
Indoor the accuracy is not good enough on GPS.
Wither you set up a condition with the wifi sensor or you make the home zone larger.

Here is the inaccuracy of our phones (some of it is real, but you can see there is some jitter)

I think I set our home zone to 100 or 150 m and it usually works OK.

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Ah okay. I’m at 100m at the moment i think - will try changing it to 150m

Edit - how on earth do I change it? The UI just keeps sending me in circles!

Map →

→ Map…

Settings → Area & Zones → takes me to the map as well!

Your phone as any other cell phone is tracked by triangulation in cell towers. If you don’t wanna be tracked don’t use cell phone computer or any other devices that is connected to any network.

I noticed this too.
There used to be a setting for it.
I think you should submit a bug report, it makes no sense.

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According to Zone - Home Assistant you have to yaml overwrite your home zone.

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Ohh… That’s new.

the best way to troubleshoot what happened is to look at the logs and see what the location reports coming from google look like so you can make proper adjustments, we cover the logs in our troubleshooting steps from there look at the reports when the issue happens and look at the location data printed

I use GPSLogger which is fairly simple to set-up and is energy friendly, this is the sole application allowed to use GPS in my phone. All sensors related to GPS included geocoded location are disabled.