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Galaxy Watch 4/5 series poor GPS Fix performance

(Topic created: 05-12-2023 05:37 PM)
usertlOcykGzxn
Asteroid
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Galaxy Watch

Watch seems to be plagued with problems resolving GPS fix when not tethered to a phone.   I went out for a run, without my phone and it took the watch close to 10 minutes to get a GPS Fix.  This severely limits the functionality of the "Outdoor/Fitness" aspect of the watch.

Is there a planned fix?

93 Replies
Liam_TECH
Explorer
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Galaxy Watch
Well, it is hard why this is happening, but it is maybe you paused it lots of times. (Keep in mind that sometimes it can Frick up and think you are standing still and can pause it.)
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tutone
Astronaut
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Galaxy Watch
Worst tracking ever! If you run anywhere close to a tree the tracking will look like a 3 year old scribbled it with a crayon. And it will show that you ran a sub 5 mile. So frustrating.
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Mercusio
Cosmic Ray
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Galaxy Watch
 
image
 
I have been an avid runner for years, but stopped during Covid. I recently started back and was startled when my watch announced "you just finished your first mile," and I was about a quarter mile early. Later looking at the GPS, no wonder! It's all over the place! All my previous watches would have slight variations, but nothing like this. I have now run two more times, checking Google advances GPS. I don't like sharing data with Google because they are all rich enough and have far more homes each than I do. But I will share if I must. I refuse to run with a phone, that's why i bought the watch, right? The story here is that it didn't make much difference at all to change the settings. Someone please tell me this is fixable and it's not simply that the PRO 5 stinks. I like Samsung, and want to keep using their products, but this isn't really any help.
thepenguin134
Cosmic Ray
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Galaxy Watch
I was having gps issues with my watch5 pro, but I figured out gow to make it work better and Ill list the ways I found below. Its important to note that these issue occured with it in standalone and with no data plan set up. If you want solutions then scroll down, but Ill also explain why I made this in the first place.

My Background: 
I had a few runs track terribly. My first run was in complete fog so I chalked it up to bad weather. However, when I went for another on a perfectly sunny day my watch tracked 2 miles from a 1.5 mile loop. WAY OFF. This in turn ruined my strava stats, but oh well. Then I went for a run where I waited 40+ seconds for my gps to lock, but it never did. This run however got the distance pretty much right (1.93) out of a true 2 miles. I think this was because it was able to rely on step data, pretty neat! Finally, in my run today I used the solutions below (Esspesially the getting a lock before leaving you phone) and it tracked near perfectly with gps! It got 1.47 out of the true 1.5 miles.

Solutions:
1. Make sure you get a lock on gps before your run. This solution is given everywhere, but I cant stress the importance. You can watch for the gps logo at the top of an activity to go solid to know its locked.

2. If locking the gps is taking forever then try locking on while still connected to a phone or other device with gps. This will likely speed up the lock.

3. I personally use an app called Wear GPS Fix. Its whole purpose is to lock on gps and then buzz/open a fitness app of your choosing afterwards. Another solution is to just start an activity on your watch and pause it till your ready to start.

4. Run the same route multiple times? This one is still guesswork as Ive only just now got my gps working, but its possible that it gets better at tracking if repeated. Also, samsung health can track distance with steps so as it gets used to your pace its gps accuracy/distance likely improves.

5. Turn on location accuracy in google settings? I currently have this off, but it seems like it should help. The other solutions seem much more important than this though.

Putting it all together:
So to combine all of these steps together is as follows. Use Wear GPS/start and pause an activity while connected to your phone. Then as you leave your phone start your run and wait for the green pip to stop flashing. Should be around 10 seconds. 

There you go! Hopefully this helps out, as I know I was very confused when my runs weren't tracking properly. I'm so happy I dont have to abandon this otherwise AMAZING watch just because of gps problems.
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DanG92263
Honored Contributor
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Galaxy Watch
Just a reminder, if you are using the Watch5 Pro without a data plan it is obsolutely necessary to have the watch connected to your phone via Bluetooth for it to function at its best.
thepenguin134
Cosmic Ray
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Galaxy Watch
yep, this was just for people who dont like the weight jostling around in their pocket!
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Galaxy Watch
I downloaded the app mentioned in #3 on my Watch 4 Classic and it cannot find GPS at all. Checked all location settings and everything is on. I just cannot get this watch to lock on GPS at all l 😡
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thepenguin134
Cosmic Ray
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Galaxy Watch
dangg, were you connected to your phone with its gps on?
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Galaxy Watch
Yes ... I honestly don't know what is up. My weather app updates location while I'm out and about without issue so I can't help but wonder if it's an issue with Samsung Health?? IDK ...

I open the GPS Fix app and it just sits there at Fix: 0, Found: 0 and waiting. Whether on [Test Only] or [Samsung Health]
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thepenguin134
Cosmic Ray
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Galaxy Watch
dang sorry my solutions didnt work for you, maybe try turning the google setting off to mimic what I did? Otherwise you might be out of luck 😞
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