How to Fix iPhone 13 GPS Drift Issue

Is your iPhone 13 series suffering from the GPS drift issue?

End up getting lost on your trip while using your iPhone 13 series for navigation? 

While the iPhone 13 series is among the best releases of iPhones, some areas still need improvement. 

Recently, users have been complaining about GPS issues with the iPhone 13 series

iphone 13 gps drift issue

The problem occurs on all versions of iPhone 13 and causes navigation apps to report inaccurate locations. 

In this guide, we’ll show you how to resolve the GPS drift issue on iPhone 13 series. 

Let’s begin!

1. Restart Your iPhone. 

Before changing anything on your device, try giving it a restart first. A simple restart can resolve most minor issues on your iPhone. 

This allows your system to reload its resources, eliminating temporary bugs and glitches that occurred during use. 

Restarting your iPhone should also flush corrupted data from its memory. 

Here’s how you can restart your iPhone 13 series: 

  1. Hold down the Volume Down button and Side button until the ‘Slide to Power Off’ prompt appears. 
  2. Now, drag the slider to the right and wait for 30 seconds. 
  3. Press the Side button afterward to turn on your device. 
iphone 13 gps drift issue

Try using any map application to check if the GPS drift issue is solved. 

2. Toggle Location Off/On. 

Similar to restarting your phone, toggling location services off and on again helps resolve any temporary issues that may have occurred on the service. 

If you still encounter GPS drift on your iPhone 13 series, follow the steps below: 

  1. Open Settings on your iPhone. 
  2. Now, go to Privacy > Location Services
  3. Tap the toggle switch to disable the feature. 
  4. After 10 seconds, enable the feature again. 
iphone 13 gps drift issue

Once done, go back to the navigation app you’re using to check if the problem is solved. 

Related: How to Fix App Store Not Working on iPhone 13 Series

3. Grant Location Access. 

Another reason why you encounter GPS issues with your iPhone 13 series is a conflict with permissions. 

If the navigation app you’re using is not allowed to access your location, then it won’t be able to track your position accurately or work at all. 

Follow the steps below to ensure that your navigation app is allowed to access your location: 

  1. Go to Settings on your iPhone. 
  2. Now, access the Privacy tab. 
  3. Tap on Location Services and tap on the navigation app you’re using. 
  4. Under ‘Allow Location Access’, select While Using the App or Ask Next Time or When I Share.
iphone 13 gps drift issue

Restart the app and check if the problem is solved. 

4. Toggle Airplane Mode. 

Toggling Airplane Mode on and off can also resolve GPS issues on your iPhone. 

Besides turning off cellular services on your iPhone, Airplane Mode also disables other radios, including GPS. 

This should resolve any temporary issues on a hardware level on your device. 

Here’s what you need to do: 

  1. Swipe downwards from the upper right corner of your screen to open the Control Center
  2. Now, tap the Airplane icon beside cellular data. 
Control Center
  1. Wait for 5 to 10 seconds. 
  2. Tap the Airplane icon again to disable Airplane Mode. 
  3. Connect to your network or enable mobile data.  

    Go back to the navigation app you’re using to check if the problem is solved. 

    5. Don’t Block the GPS Antenna. 

    The GPS antenna on your iPhone 13 series is located on the right side when you hold the phone up. 

    Blocking this antenna prevents your phone from delivering optimum GPS performance, resulting in the GPS drift issue. 

    While your hands can’t block the antenna, some phone cases or covers can. 

    Check whether removing the phone case on your iPhone 13 series helps. 

    If your phone case is the culprit, remove it when using navigating apps or use a phone case from reputable brands. 

    6. Update Your iPhone. 

    A faulty version of iOS can also be the reason for the GPS drift issue on your iPhone 13 series. 

    To rule this out, check if there are available updates for your iPhone and install them to patch bugs and errors. 

    Follow the guide below to update your iPhone: 

    1. Launch Settings on your device. 
    2. Now, tap on General > Software Update
    3. If there’s an available update, tap on Download and Install
    Update iPhone


    • Your device can restart several times while installing the update. 
    • Make sure that your iPhone has at least 50% battery before installing updates. It’s best to keep your device plugged into the wall charger to avoid interruptions. 
    • Allow at least 15 minutes for the update to install, especially if it’s a major update (iOS 14 to iOS 15).

    Open Waze or Maps on your iPhone to check if the GPS works accurately. 

    Related: How to Fix iPhone 13 Bluetooth Problems

    7. Force Restart Your iPhone. 

    If you still encounter problems with your iPhone’s GPS, try performing a force restart. This should reboot your device on a hardware level by cutting off power from the battery.

    Like a regular restart, this should clear your system memory, ensuring no corrupted data or errors. 

    Here’s what you need to do: 

    1. Press and release the Volume Up button
    2. Now, press and release the Volume Down button
    3. Hold the Side button
    4. Release the Side button when the Apple logo appears. 
    Force Restart

    Go back to Waze, Google Maps, etc., to check if the problem is solved. 

    8. Reset Location & Privacy Settings. 

    Restoring settings related to location and privacy can also resolve issues with your GPS. 

    This should restore system settings to factory defaults, fixing any problems that are caused by custom settings. 

    Follow the guide below to reset your location and privacy settings: 

    1. Launch the Settings app on your iPhone. 
    2. Next, go to General
    3. Tap on Transfer or Reset iPhone
    4. Choose Reset and tap on Reset Location & Privacy
    iphone 13 gps drift issue


    • Your iPhone will immediately restart upon resetting your location settings. 
    • It may appear to be stuck in the Apple logo. Wait for the process to complete, which usually takes around 5 to 10 minutes. 

    Once done, try using your GPS to check if the problem is solved. 

    9. Visit the Apple Store. 

    If none of the solutions above worked, we recommend bringing your iPhone to the nearest Apple Store

    Find Apple Store

    Your device could be suffering from a hardware issue and needs to be checked by a professional. 

    If your iPhone 13 needs repairs, you can visit Apple’s coverage checker to see if it’s still covered by warranty. 

    Since the 13 series is an old model, replacement, and refund is not an option since Apple only gives 14 days to return a defective device. 

    That sums up our guide on how to fix the iPhone 13 GPS drift issue. If you have questions, drop a comment below, and we’ll do our best to answer them. 

    If this guide helped you, please share it.


    • John Sixto

      John is a staff writer at Saint and comes from a SAP ABAP development background. He has a Bachelors in IT and has been writing since 2018, with over 500 posts published. He loves to build PCs and has a deep curiosity in understanding how different components and configurations work. John spends hundreds of hours at a time, researching and testing the software and apps, before he proceeds to write about it. LinkedIn X (Twitter)

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