Many of the apps and features on your Google Pixel 4A will need to use your device’s location in some capacity.
Maps apps might need to use very specific and detailed location data to provide you with accurate directions when you are driving or walking to a destination, while video streaming apps might need to know what country you are in to provide you with the correct content library.
You may even be familiar with the Location settings menu on your Pixel 4A where you can set the Location privileges for the apps and services on the device. This lets you make sure that only the apps that actually need your location data have access to it.
But there is a setting on that menu called Wi-Fi and Bluetooth scanning that you might not be familiar with. This allows your device to scan for Wi-Fi networks and Bluetooth devices to better determine your location.
You can turn off the Wi-Fi and Bluetooth scanning on your Google Pixel phone by going to Settings > Location > Wi-Fi and Bluetooth Scanning > then turning off one or both of these options.
You can continue reading our article for more information on this feature, as well as more on customizing the location services and settings on your phone.
How to Disable Google Pixel 4A Wi-Fi Scanning and Bluetooth Scanning
- Open the apps list.
- Choose Settings.
- Select Location.
- Touch Wi-Fi and Bluetooth scanning.
- Turn off Wi-Fi Scanning and/or Bluetooth scanning.
Our guide continues below with additional information on shutting off the Pixel 4A background network scanning activities, including pictures of these steps.
How to Stop Android 11 from Doing Bluetooth and Wi-Fi Scanning (Guide with Pictures)
The steps in this article were performed on a Google Pixel 4A in the Android 11 operating system.
Step 1: Swipe up on the Home screen to bring up the app menu.
Step 2: Scroll to the bottom of the list and choose the Settings option.
Step 3: Scroll down and choose Location from the list of settings.
Step 4: Select the Wi-Fi and Bluetooth scanning item.
Step 5: Tap the button next to Wi-Fi Scanning or Bluetooth Scanning (or both) to turn them off.
Our tutorial continues below with additional discussion about disabling the background Wi-Fi and Bluetooth scanning on your Pixel 4A smartphone.
More Information on Shutting off Automatic Network Scanning on a Pixel 4A
While there are benefits to letting your Pixel apps and services automatically scan for Wi-Fi networks and Bluetooth devices, it isn’t something that is necessary for you to use the device.
Per the information on the screen, each of these types of scanning will:
- Allow apps and services to scan for Wi-Fi networks or Bluetooth devices at any time, even when Wi-Fi or Bluetooth are turned off. This can be used, for example, to improve location-based features and services.
All of this extra scanning can use a bit of extra battery life, so it’s something that you may want to keep in mind if you are really trying to optimize your battery usage.
You may also not want to provide additional location data that you don’t need to, and this is something that could make you feel a little better about your privacy.
You can quickly turn off Wi-Fi or Bluetooth on your Pixel 4A by swiping down from the top of the screen, then tapping either the Wi-Fi button or the Bluetooth button to turn that setting on or off.
Matthew Burleigh has been writing technology how-to articles and tutorials for over a decade. He has extensive experience in information technology both in small business and as a consultant.
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