Gadgets

Why Is My Location Wrong on My Computer?

Laptop

Having the right physical location is important to tailor your apps to your use. With the correct location, you get more relevant news about the world around you and can find more relevant services (like restaurants and cafés). Many apps like News, Maps, Weather, and Cortana also use your location to give you a better Windows 10 experience. With the wrong location, such apps usually become useless.

Quick Answer

Your location on your computer can be wrong if you get internet from an internet service provider. For instance, if you use satellite or dial-up internet, the ISP doesn’t provide the correct location, which is why you get the wrong location on the computer. 

If you also see the wrong location when using different Windows 10 apps, then read on as we discuss why that’s happening in more detail and how to fix it.

Why Is the Location Wrong on My Computer?

Most interactive apps need your location to be helpful. Phones and a few laptops can easily work because of the GPS module inside it that can pinpoint the location accurately to some meters. Another way these devices find your location is via IP pinging or internet protocol pinging

You can monitor the incoming data for the endpoint terminal’s location, which is your router or phone. With the help of your router and the internet connections near it, it can become effortless to triangulate your location to just a few yards.

If you have a DSL or cable provider, your location should be accurate, at least within the USA. The same applies if you use public Wi-Fi or a phone’s hotspot. However, if you get your internet from an internet service provider (ISP), there’s a high chance that your location is wrong. For instance, you might have trouble using satellite or dial-up internet if your service provider doesn’t provide the proper location service.

The last location sent back is your service provider’s last terminal or building before it reaches your location. This location could be miles away from your location or even in other states. But there might be other reasons for your location being wrong on your computer. 

Previously, you could set the default location for different apps like weather and maps. However, with Microsoft’s recent update, it is now possible to set your default system location. If there’s some problem and the correct address is difficult to determine, the apps (like Windows services, Maps, Cortana, news, and weather) will use the system location as the current location.

How To Fix the Wrong Location on a Computer

It’s hard to pinpoint exactly the cause of the problems, but there are easy solutions that can fix them. 

First, open up the Settings app and go to “Privacy”. Under “Apps Permission” on the left side, go to “Location”. Now, you need to do three things.

  1. Go to “Allow access to location on this device”. If it is off, click the toggle to turn it on. Then under “Allow apps to access your location”, make sure the toggle is in the on position.
  2. Go to “Choose which apps can access your precise location”. Under the heading, you’ll see a list of apps using your location.
  3. Make sure the apps showing the wrong locations are switched on. To be on the safe side, even if the toggle in front of the app is on the on position, switch it off and then put it on the on position again.  
  4. Scroll back to the “Default Location” section and click “Set Default” to bring up the map.
  5. Click the round “Show My Location” icon on the right. 

If this brings up an error saying: “We can’t find the exact location. Do you want to set up a default location to use when this happens”, click “Set Default”. This will open up a search box. Instead of clicking “Detect My Location”, manually enter your location. This will start to show your current location. 

Once you’re done, you can now try and click on “Detect My Location” so that Maps starts to detect your exact location.   

Summary

Lots of people complain about their Windows computer not showing the correct location. In some cases, the computer shows that it is a few miles away from the actual location, while in other cases, it shows an entirely different state. This problem is common in computers that don’t have a GPS module, and the system has to rely on the ISP’s location to determine your location. So if you use dial-up or satellite internet, there’s a high chance you’ll see the wrong location on your computer.   

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