How to Fake a GPS Location on Your Phone

Change your iPhone or Android location to anywhere in the world

Changing the location on your iPhone or Android device involves tricking your phone into telling apps that you’re located somewhere you're not. In most cases, when you spoof your GPS location, every location-based app on your phone will be fooled.

This might seem like a weird thing to do, since most of us use GPS for tasks that need our real location, like when finding directions and weather updates. However, there are legitimate reasons to change your phone's location to a fake one.

Unfortunately, doing so isn't very straightforward. There isn’t a “fake GPS location” setting built in to either iOS or Android, and neither do most apps let you spoof your location through a simple option.

Setting up your phone to use fake GPS only affects your location. It doesn't change your phone number, hide your IP address, or alter other things you do from your device.

Android Location Spoofing

Search for "fake GPS" on Google Play, and you'll find tons of options, some free and others not, and some that require your phone to be rooted.

One app that doesn't need your phone to be rooted—so long as you're using Android 6.0 or newer—is called Fake GPS Free, and it's really easy to use it to fake your Android phone location.

The information below should apply no matter who made your Android phone: Samsung, Google, Huawei, Xiaomi, etc.

  1. Install Fake GPS Free.

  2. Open the app and accept the initial setup prompts. One is to let the app access your device's location, and the other is to agree to the advertising terms.

    In recent versions of Android, select While using the app (older versions might call this something different) on the first prompt, and then ACCEPT on the advertising message.

  3. Tap Enable on the message at the bottom about mock locations.

  4. Choose Developer Settings to open that screen, and then go to Select mock location app > FakeGPS Free.

    FakeGPS Free Android app screens

    If you don't see this screen, turn on developer mode, and then return to this step. In some Android versions, you have to put a check in the box next to the Allow mock locations option on the Developer options screen.

  5. Use the back button to return to the app, and search for the location you want to fake on your phone. If you're making a route, tap-and-hold on the map to drop place markers.

  6. Use the play button on the bottom corner of the map to enable the fake GPS setting.

    Fake GPS Free Android app map

    You can close the app and open Google Maps or another location app to see if your GPS location has been spoofed. To get your real location back, press the stop button.

If you're interested in trying a different Android location spoofer, we've confirmed that the following free location changing apps work much like Fake GPS Free: Fake GPS, Fly GPS, and Fake GPS Location.

Another method is to use Xposed Framework. You can install an app, such as Fake My GPS, to let certain apps use the pretend location and others use your real location. You can find similar modules by searching through the Xposed Module Repository on your computer or the Xposed Installer app on your phone.

iPhone Location Spoofing

Faking your iPhone location isn't as easy as it is on an Android device—you can't just download an app for it. However, software makers have built desktop programs that make this easy.

3uTools is the best way to fake your iPhone or iPad location because the software is free, and we've confirmed that it works with iOS and iPadOS 15.

  1. Download 3uTools. We tested it on Windows 11, but it works in other versions of Windows as well.

  2. Select Toolbox at the top, and then VirtualLocation from that screen.

    3uTools Toolbox options
  3. Select somewhere on the map, or use the search bar, to choose where you want to fake your location.

  4. Select Modify virtual location, and then select OK when you see the confirmation prompt.

    3uTools virtual location map

    Restart your device to undo the fake location and pull real GPS data again.

Another way to spoof your iPhone's location without jailbreaking is with iTools from ThinkSky. Unlike 3uTools, it also runs on macOS and can simulate movement, but it's free only for a limited time and is said to work up through only iOS 12.

  1. Download and install iTools.

  2. Open the program, and select Free Trial to continue.

  3. Plug your device into your computer and navigate to Toolbox > Virtual Location.

    iTools Toolbox screen for an iPhone on Windows
  4. If you see this screen, select the image in the Developer Mode section to agree to download the iOS Developer Disk Image file.

    iTools Developer and Hosted Mode options
  5. Search for a location from the top of the screen, and then select Go to find it on the map.

  6. Select Move here to instantly fake your location.

    Move Here button in Virtual Location window of iTools

    You can now exit the Virtual Location window in iTools as well as the program itself. If you’re asked whether to stop the simulation, you can choose No to make sure that your fake GPS location stays even when you unplug your phone.

    To get your real location back, return to the map and select Stop Simulation. You can also reboot your device to immediately start using its real location again.

    Stop Simulation button in iTools Virtual Location window

    However, remember that you can fake your phone's location with iTools only within the 24-hour trial period; you'll need to use an entirely different computer if you want to run the trial again. The fake location will remain as long as you don't restart your device.

    Visit iTools for more info on how to use the map. It can also simulate a route.

    Why Would You Fake Your Location?

    There are lots of situations where you might set up a fake GPS location, both for fun and for other reasons.

    Maybe you want to change your location so that something like a dating app thinks you’re a hundred miles away, perfect if you’re planning to move somewhere and want to get ahead of the dating game.

    Spoofing your location might also come into play when using a location-based game like Pokemon GO. Instead of having to actually travel several miles away to pick up a different Pokemon type, you could trick your phone into telling the game that you’re already there, and it will assume your fake location is accurate.

    Illustration of a person on the beach with "Fake GPS location: The Office" coming out of their smartphone
    Lifewire / Tim Liedtke 

    Other reasons to set up a mock GPS location might be if you want to "travel" to Dubai and check-in to a restaurant you've never actually been to, or visit a famous landmark to trick your Facebook friends into thinking you're on an extravagant vacation.

    You can also use your fake GPS location to fool your family or friends in your location-sharing app, to hide your real location from apps that request it, and even to set your real location if GPS satellites aren't doing a great job at finding it for you.

    GPS Spoofing Problems

    Before getting started, please know that although it can be a lot of fun to fake your location, it’s not always helpful. Plus, because GPS spoofing isn’t a built-in option, it isn’t just a click away to get it going, and location fakers don’t always work for every app that reads your location.

    If you install a fake GPS location app on your phone to use it for, say, a video game, you’ll find that other apps that you want to use your real location with will also use the fake location. For example, the game might very well use your spoofed address to your advantage, but if you open your navigation app to get directions somewhere, you’ll have to either turn off the location spoofer or manually adjust your starting location.

    The same is true for other things like checking in to restaurants, staying current on your family-based GPS locator, checking the surrounding weather, etc. If you’re tricking your location system-wide for everything on your phone, it will, obviously, affect the location in all your location-based apps.

    Some websites falsely claim that using a VPN will change your GPS location. This is not true for most VPN apps because the primary purpose for a VPN is to change your public IP address. Relatively few VPNs also include a location spoofer.

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