Apple iPhone XR GPS stopped working after updating iOS [Troubleshooting Guide]

Software updates are rolled out to offer enhanced features and ensure stability on certain devices. Nonetheless, some updates can produce negative outcomes as they tend to trigger adverse symptoms rather than eradicating prior system flaws. Such circumstances are likewise manifesting in major and minor iOS updates. And the recent iOS version 12.1.4 update is no exception.

Emerging among the first post-update issues from the recently rolled out iOS version for iPhones and iPads is on the GPS bug. Reports have it that some iPhone XR variants ended up having GPS flaws after the recent iOS transition. And this post tackles this issue. Read on to learn how to deal with your iPhone XR GPS that stopped working after installing iOS 12.1.4 update.

If you have other problems however, visit our troubleshooting page as we’ve already addressed some of the most common issues with this device. Browse through the page to find issues that are similar with yours and feel free to use the solutions we suggested. If you still need our help, fill up our questionnaire and hit submit to contact us.

Why would GPS stop working on your iPhone XR following an iOS update?

Just like other apps and services, GPS can also go rogue from an update. In normal circumstances, the transpiring symptoms are just normal  post-update reactions following the recent system transition. The same thing can happen if the recent iOS update contains a GPS bug. In that case, GPS-enabled apps and pertinent services may be ruined by the update. In minor cases, performing some tweaks can render a temporary, if not, permanent solution. But complex post-update bugs usually cause stubborn symptoms that often require dedicated fix patches.

Aside from bad updates, there are also other factors that you need to consider when troubleshooting GPS problems on your iPhone XR. Among the usual triggers are network connectivity issues, signal problems, GPS app errors, and in worst cases, hardware damage. Before rushing to a service center, you can try some workarounds to rule out software-related factors. Highlighted below are a few applicable solutions to a relevant issue on the iPhone XR GPS that stopped working after updating to iOS 12.1.4. If you’re experiencing GPS problems such as no signal, location update failure, slow location tracking, incorrect GPS location and other relevant symptoms after updating your iPhone XR, then performing the following procedures could help. To determine if the problem is fixed or not, try running a GPS-enabled app after performing each of these subsequent solutions and see if it’s working as intended.

Before you begin troubleshooting, make sure that your GPS app is up-to-date. Apps that aren’t updated may not be able to work with the latest iOS version due to some system conflicts. In this case, updating the app would be necessary. Else, utilize any of these procedures to troubleshoot your device.

1st solution: Restart your iPhone XR (soft reset).

Random system errors including minor post-update bugs that caused problems to certain apps and services are usually remedied by a restart or soft reset on the phone. Restarting is also imperative after installing a firmware update to apply all new software changes and to refresh the operating system in general. Here’s how to restart or soft reset your iPhone XR:

  1. Press and hold the Side/Power button and either Volume buttons simultaneously for a few seconds.
  2. Release the buttons when the Slide to Power Off command appears and then drag the power off slider to the right.
  3. After 30 seconds, press and hold the Power/Side button again until the iPhone reboots.

Aside from clearing out minor post-update errors, restarting also dumps junk files that are stored among other cache on the phone’s internal memory including corrupt GPS-related data.

ALSO READ: How to fix Apple iPhone XR ‘A device attached to the system is not functioning’ error

2nd solution: Toggle Airplane mode on and off.

Performing the Airplane mode trick can also help fix signal issues that were triggered by the recent iOS update bug. The phone’s GPS signal reception might have been destabilized after the system transition and therefore needs a quick refreshing. So here’s what you should do then:

  1. From your Home screen, navigate to Settings-> Airplane Mode menu
  2. Then toggle the switch to turn Airplane Mode ON. Wireless radios including Wi-Fi connections and other cellular network services will be disabled.
  3. While Airplane mode is enabled, restart/soft reset your iPhone XR to clear out minor system glitches.
  4. After the phone restarts, go back to Settings-> Airplane mode menu, then tap the switch again to turn Airplane mode OFF.

Allow your device to re-establish network connections then launch a GPS-enabled app on your iPhone XR to see if it’s working properly or not.

3rd solution: Manage location permission settings on your iPhone XR.

It’s also possible that the recent iOS update overrides your location permission settings and disables location services. To check and manage this setting, just refer to these steps:

  1. From the Home screen, tap Settings.
  2. Tap on Privacy.
  3. Select Location Services then toggle the switch to enable the feature and make sure that location services is enabled for your map app.

Restart your iPhone after making necessary changes and then see if that fixed the problem. If not, then continue to the next applicable solution.

ALSO READ: How to fix an Apple iPhone XR that won’t connect or sync to Apple Watch after updating iOS

4th solution: Reset location and privacy settings on your iPhone XR.

Another setting that can possibly be overridden by an update are location and privacy settings on your iPhone XR. If this settings aren’t properly configured, chances are that relevant services including GPS apps may not be able to function. To rule this out, follow these steps to reset location and privacy settings on your iPhone XR. Doing so will restore the default options and values. Then you can enable or disable necessary options accordingly. Here’s how:

  1. Tap Settings from the Home screen.
  2. Select General.
  3. Scroll down and tap on Reset.
  4. Select the option to Reset Location & Privacy.

When the reset is finished, restart your iPhone and then start enabling and disabling necessary options.

5th solution: Reset network settings on your iPhone XR.

Network settings errors in general can also be the underlying cause of the GPS problems and other location services. If the recent update ruined your previous network configurations, then restoring the default network values can help. Doing so will let you configure individual network options and apply your previous settings. Here’s how it’s done:

  1. From your Home screen, tap on Settings.
  2. Select General.
  3. Scroll down to and then tap on Reset.
  4. Select the option to Reset network settings.
  5. Enter your passcode when asked to continue.
  6. Then follow the onscreen instructions to confirm network settings reset.

Your iPhone should restart automatically when the reset is finished. By then you can set up and reconnect to Wi-Fi, enable Bluetooth connections and GPS apps on your device.

6th solution: Restore factory default settings on your iPhone XR.

If the previous resets failed to solve the problem and your iPhone XR GPS is still not working, there’s a higher chance that you’re dealing with a complex system error that often requires full system reset. But before you do, be sure to back up all your important files because they will also be erased during the reset process. You can back up your iOS files to iCloud or iTunes drive, as you would prefer. Once your backup is secured, follow these steps to perform a factory reset through your iPhone XR settings menu:

  1. From your Home screen, tap on Settings.
  2. Select General.
  3. Scroll down to and then tap on Reset.
  4. Select the option to Erase all content and settings.
  5. Enter your device passcode when ask to proceed then follow the onscreen instructions to confirm factory settings reset.

If you opt to back up files to iTunes, then you can use reset your iPhone XR through iTunes instead. To get started, you will need to secure a Windows or Mac computer with the latest version of iTunes app installed. Then connect your iPhone to the computer via USB/Lightning cable then wait for iTunes to recognize your device. Once your iPhone XR appears in iTunes, you can click on the given commands and controls. Just follow the onscreen prompts to finish the entire reset process.

7th solution: Restore your iPhone XR in recovery mode.

Another ultimate solution to post-update GPS problems is a recovery mode restore. This is an advanced system restore method compared to a master reset. It will put your device in a recovery state and then repair iOS flaws through iTunes. To get started, connect your iPhone XR to the computer using the Apple-supplied USB cable or Lightning cable. While your iPhone is connected, force it to restart and continue to the next steps to enter recovery mode.

  1. Press and quickly release the Volume Up button.
  2. Next, press and quickly release the Volume Down button.
  3. Then, press and hold the Side/Power button until you see the Connect to iTunes screen. This means that your iPhone has entered recovery mode.
  4. When you see the option to Update or Restore, choose Restore.
  5. Then follow the rest of the onscreen instructions to finish restoring your iPhone in iTunes.

The restore process usually takes 15 minutes to finish. If it exceeds the said time and your device exits recovery mode, just wait for iTunes to finish downloading the software and then go back to the previous steps to enter recovery mode again and finish restoring from an iOS backup.

8th solution: Restore your iPhone XR in DFU mode.

The deepest type of system restore you can do on an iPhone is a DFU mode restore. It’s often used when dealing with a totally corrupt iOS and system functions. If the recent update contains complex bugs that completely ruined the phone’s GPS functions, then you may opt to restore your iPhone XR in DFU mode. This process would result to permanent data loss so if possible, back up your important files to iTunes beforehand. Once you’re all set, connect your iPhone to the computer using the supplied USB or Lightning cable. When your iPhone is connected, continue with these steps to enter DFU mode:

  1. Quickly press and release the Volume Up button, then quickly press and release the Volume Down button. Finally, press and hold the Side/Power button until the screen turns completely black.
  2. As soon as the screen turns goes black, press and hold the Volume Down button while you keep holding the Side/Power button.
  3. After 5 seconds, release the Side/Power button but continue to hold the Volume Down button until your iPhone shows up in iTunes on your computer.
  4. When your iPhone appears in iTunes, you can release the Volume button as your iPhone is already in DFU mode.

Once your device is in DFU mode, the screen becomes completely black. If you see any logo or text, then it means that you haven’t successfully entered DFU mode and so you’ll need to start from the very beginning.

GPS still not working on your iPhone XR?

For post-iOS update issues that could not be remedied by any applicable workarounds on your end, escalating the problem to Apple Support or your carrier would be the next step. This way they’ll become aware that such problem exists, following the latest iOS 12.1.4 update. If it’s confirmed to be a post-update bug, then Apple is obliged to roll out a dedicated fix patch.

I hope that we’ve been able to help you fix the problem with your device. We would appreciate it if you helped us spread the word so please share this post if you found it helpful. Thank you so much for reading!