Apple rolled out iOS 15 for everyone last month bringing refinements to several features already present on iPhone. Among the available improvements, a renewed focus has been brought to make the Find My app more functional than ever.
The biggest change to arrive on the Find My app is continuous live location sharing which updates your location details and shares them with people you know as you move in real-time. Before this, your location was only updated periodically when you shared it with friends and family. Apple says the new and improved live location sharing feature will provide “an immediate sense of direction, speed, and progress” to anyone who has access to your whereabouts on Find My.
In this post, we’ll explain how to set up, share your live location your contacts, and see someone else’s whereabouts using the Find My app on iOS 15.
Related: How to Change Alarm on iOS 15
How to set up location sharing on iOS 15 (4 steps)
Before you start sharing your location with someone on Find My, you need to make sure that you have set up location sharing appropriately on iOS 15. For this, you need to turn on Location Services and Find My inside Settings, and also enable Share My Location inside the Find My app.
Step 1: Turn on Location Services
One of the basic things to make sure when using Find My is that you have enabled location services on your iPhone. This is a necessary step as the Find My app will need access to your coordinates and that’s only possible if you enable Location services inside Settings. To turn on Location Services, go to Settings > Privacy > Location Services and enable the toggle adjacent to ‘Location Services’ until it turns green.
Step 2: Turn on Find My iPhone
After you’ve enabled Location Services, you will now have to turn on Find My for your Apple ID, if you’ve not already. To enable Find My, go to Settings > Your Name > Find My > Find My iPhone and toggle the ‘Find My iPhone’ switch to on.
Step 3: Give Find My access to your location
Once you’ve enabled Find My for your Apple ID, you can grant the app access to your phone’s GPS. For this, go to Settings > Privacy > Location Services > Find My and select the ‘While Using the App’ option under ‘Allow Location Access’. Since Find My requires access to your iPhone’s precise location so that others can track you, we also recommend that you turn on ‘Precise Location’ on the same screen.
Step 4: Enable Share My Location
When you’ve sorted out all of the above requirements, it’s time to enable ‘Share my Location’ for the Find My app. Doing this will allow you to share your live location with others you know. To do this, open the Find My app, select the ‘Me’ tab at the bottom and enable the toggle adjacent to ‘Share My Location’.
To make sure it’s the iPhone you have on hand as the device that shares your live location, scroll down on the ‘Me’ screen and tap on the ‘Use This iPhone as My Location’ option.
You have now successfully set up location sharing for Find My. You can follow the sections below to start using live location sharing on your iPhone.
Once you’ve set up location sharing inside Settings and Find My, you can start sharing your live location with your friends and family. For this, open the Find My app, and tap on the ‘+’ adjacent to ‘People’.
In the overflow menu that appears, select the ‘Share My Location’ option.
On the next screen, type the name/number of the person with whom you want to share your location inside the ‘To’ section. When the contact appears below, select it and repeat this to add as many people as you want to share your location with. Once you’ve added your friends and family for location sharing, tap on the ‘Send’ option at the top right corner.
You will now be prompted with a popup screen that asks you to select the duration for which you want your shared location to be visible. You can select your preferred option by tapping on it and location sharing should commence right away.
When your location is shared with someone, their name will appear under the ‘People’ section inside the Find My app and it will read that this person “can see your location” on their phone.
How to stop sharing your live location
If you started sharing your live location, the other person will only be able to see your whereabouts for the selected duration – 1 hour or until the end of the day. If you selected the ‘Share Indefinitely’ option while sharing your location or if you want to end your sharing session prematurely, you can do so by going to the ‘People’ tab inside Find My and select the person you no longer want to share your location with.
On the next screen, tap on the ‘Stop Sharing Location’ inside the ‘Sharing Your Location’ section.
In the dialog that appears on the screen, tap on ‘Stop Sharing Location’.
Alternatively, if you wish to hide your location from everyone, you can go to the ‘Me’ tab inside Find My and turn off the ‘Share My Location’ toggle until it turns grey.
How to see someone’s location on Find My (2 steps)
You can only see someone’s location on Find My if they’ve shared it with you and you open their location within the period of sharing.
Step 1: See someone’s location already shared with you
When someone has shared their location with you through the Find My, their name should appear inside the ‘People’ tab on the Find My app. You should be able to see their location on the map above and get additional details by tapping on this person’s name.
When you open a person’s location, you should be able to see their full address under their name and its location on the map above.
From here, you get additional options to contact this person, get directions to their location, add alerts for when they move, share your location, and more.
Step 2: Send a request to see someone’s live location
Inside the ‘People’ tab, you’ll also see contacts with whom you’ve shared your location with but you can’t see theirs. In such scenarios, you can be able to see their live location after you send a request for it that they’ll need to accept. To send a request to see someone’s live location, select the person with whom you’ve shared your location inside the ‘People’ tab on the Find My app.
On the next screen, scroll down and tap on the ‘Ask to Follow Location’ option.
Your request will now be sent to the other person and you should be able to see this prompt on your screen.
How to accept/deny a request for location sharing
If someone has sent you a request to share your location on Find My (as shown in the section above), you will be able to either accept or deny location sharing on your own. To allow sharing your location with someone who has shared their location, open the Find My app, select the ‘People’ tab at the bottom, and tap on the ‘Share’ option under this person’s name.
If you don’t wish to share your location with this person, you can tap ‘Cancel’ instead.
How to disable friend requests for live location
If you don’t want anyone to send you requests asking you to share your live location, then the Find My app lets you prevent requests from being sent to you. For this, open the Find My app on your iPhone and tap on the ‘Me’ tab at the bottom. From here, turn off the toggle adjacent to ‘Allow Friend Requests’ until it turns grey.
Once disabled, you will no longer receive alerts or requests to share your live location with anyone on Find My.
That’s all there is to know about live location tracking using the Find My app on iOS 15.
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