how to make a geolocation app

Location-based apps are becoming the new normal. Geolocation mobile apps that display real-time locations are becoming popular. They allow location-based functionalities that users love. From Facebook to other popular social networking platforms to Uber & Amazon, location plays a key role in consumer satisfaction by allowing them to track key metrics. People also love to post their check-ins to different locations on social platforms!

This blog will highlight the importance of location applications, geolocation features, and how to make a geolocation app. It will help entrepreneurs, start-ups, and people searching for such apps/functionalities.

What Exactly Do We Call “Geolocation Apps?”

In essence, a location-based app is any mobile or web app that uses your device’s location tracking capabilities, whether it’s GPS, mobile data, or WIFI. This technology helps companies and startups create convenient and useful services for users.

Location-based apps have become increasingly popular in recent years, with more and more businesses recognizing the benefits of incorporating location-based features into their apps. By tracking your device’s location, these apps can offer personalized services, such as tailored recommendations, targeted advertising, and real-time updates on nearby events or businesses.

Why Embed A Geolocation Feature in Your App?

Behind the remarkable success of Uber, Zomato, Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp, and apps like Pokemon Go, the geolocation feature has a meaningful role. Around 82 percent of people in the US use their smartphones for GPS usage. The geolocation feature has tremendous potential to improve app performance. 

Armed with the geolocation feature, an  app can collect any information in real-time by connecting to the internet.

Critical Features Of Geographical Location Applications

features of a location based app

The essential features that should form a part of a location-based application would include GPS Coordinates, Location Tracking, and Map Integration. Other features that could help the application gain tremendous success would include:

1.   Notifications

These apps must personalize messages based on the user’s current location, interests, etc. They can alert the user about the weather conditions, current temperature, and predictions. 

Push notifications attract customers to check out the application and find relevant content. These apps can indicate traffic position in real-time and suggest an optimal route.

2.   Filter Of Information

These applications can provide a lot of information. It may or may not be relevant to the user. Therefore, a filter option can allow users to get what they want. Filters must be specific and narrow down the search extensively. 

For example, if the user is looking for an eggless bakery nearby, the application must offer an appropriate and seamless filtering process.  

3.   Voice Recognition And Guide

Using such apps while doing something else can be distracting. In some cases, it can even lead to fatality. 

Voice recognition and guide feature enables users to satisfy their queries without scrolling the phone. The application must direct the user towards its direction through voice control. 

Types Of Geolocation Apps

1. Delivery & Navigation Apps

Delivery apps are a great example of how location-based apps can use geolocation to enhance user experience. For instance, taxi apps like Uber and Lyft use geolocation to locate nearby drivers and provide estimated arrival times. This way, users can track their ride in real-time, see the route the driver is taking, and receive updates on the driver’s location.

2. Marketplace Apps

Marketplace apps also heavily rely on geolocation to provide users with relevant and personalized services. One of the most common uses of geolocation in these apps is to calculate delivery time.

By utilizing API interfaces and tracking both the user’s and buyer’s location, marketplace apps can provide an estimated delivery time that is tailored to the user’s location. This feature helps users plan their purchases and ensures that they receive their orders in a timely manner.

3. Dating Apps

Dating apps also utilize geolocation to help users find potential matches. To do this, these apps typically ask users to share their location information, which the app then uses to determine the city or district where potential partners may be located.

By using geolocation in this way, dating apps can offer a more tailored and relevant experience for users. For example, the app may show users profiles of people who live or work in the same city or district, increasing the likelihood of a match. Additionally, geolocation technology can help users identify potential matches who are nearby, making it easier to arrange in-person meetings.

4. Social Networks

Social media apps are another type of location-based app that may not be immediately obvious. When you sign in to an app like Instagram, you may see a notification asking for permission to use your geolocation. This is because the app relies on location data to offer users a more personalized experience.

For example, in TikTok, the app uses geolocation to determine which videos to show to users. If a user is located in the US, they may see different videos than someone located in Spain. Additionally, the popularity of a video may be influenced by its location. If a video becomes popular in Spain, it may be more likely to be shown to users in that country, but less likely to be shown to users in the US.

5. Fitness Apps

Geolocation features can be a valuable addition to fitness apps, particularly those that help users track their jogging routines. Many location-based fitness apps are designed to work with fitness trackers, which allow joggers to monitor their routes and progress through mobile apps.

These apps use GPS technology to collect map data, which is then used to display information about the user’s jogging route, including distance, speed, and elevation. Some apps also allow users to set goals for their jogging routine, such as running a certain distance or burning a certain number of calories.

Basic Steps To Create A Location-Based App

steps to make a geolocation app

Location-based apps benefit both industries and consumers to make their experience more comfortable and amusing. Creating a business idea requires adequate market research. A viable application will need you to answer many queries like- is the app ‘real time’ or ‘non-real-time,’ ‘map-based’ or ‘location-based,’ etc. You need to invest your time, efforts, and finances to establish a working location-based application. Let us know the steps in creating such a location-based app:

Step 1: Define Your App’s Specific Geolocation Functionality

Before beginning with the app building and development, you must outline and detail the features and functionalities to add to the application. The characteristics must be specific, unique, and enriching to your idea. You can begin with a ‘Minimum Viable Product’ that includes basic application features. Based on the user feedback, you can add complexities. 

Some essential features of location-based apps are:

Map Integration

The primary objective for a location-based app is to create a sense of relative metrics while showing the map or a location to the user. For instance,

  1. How to plan a route to your destination from where you are right now?
  2. What are the preferable locations you are looking for from your current location? 
  3. If you are looking for a service, what is the fastest pick-up or drop-points?


Many apps like Google Maps, Waze, MapQuest offer location-tracking services. It enables consumers to view the real-time status of their package, shipment, and ride.

GPS Trackers – A Plugin For Fitness Apps

The fitness and health apps use the distance and intensity of an exercise covered by an individual to indicate their fitness levels- kilometers walked, calories burned, etc. You can develop a location app that can be easily used as a plug-in for fitness apps.

Voice Guide

A perfect feature for travelers, a voice guide informs the user about the turns, route, traffic jams, etc., without distracting them from driving. It is a helpful feature because it decreases the risk of accidents due to distractions.

Push Notifications

Notifications are essential for every mobile application. However, personalizing it for loyal users has become more significant in current times. Sending the same message to all the users may be inefficient because what applies to one may not to others. The apps can send weather or health alerts, nearby events, cafes, etc.


A location-based app must recommend nearby restaurants, locations, events, news, etc., based on the user’s interests. Offering relevant content makes customers go through the app repeatedly. 

The user will engage and trust your website more when you give them appropriate reasons. Therefore, please provide them with a choice to enable or disable geolocation and explain why they need it

Step 2: Create A Design And User Interface

Your application design needs to be attractive and appealing to your potential users. No consumer would want to navigate your site if the instructions are unclear, the plan is lousy, and it does not resonate with them. Your concept must be unique and intuitive.

It should reflect originality and highlight the essential points through different fonts, styles, audio-visual elements, etc. The icons must be appropriate for a location-based application. However, it should not be too bright or confusing. The color coordination must be suitable.

The users must not find navigation and utilization in the app complex and confusing. It must protect the backend database. Place the elements in your application strategically. There should be consistency in the details and the page layout, colors, fonts, etc. The home-screen page layout should define a purpose. You can also use typography to make the hierarchy clear.

Step 3: Select A Technology Stack For Your App

A technology stack includes the tools used to develop a software product. You must take the assistance of a professional expert and select them to proceed further. It will help recognize the need to analyze the available options to create an impeccable application. The developers usually possess the proficiency to help you choose suitable systems based on your needs. Some of the tools used for location-based app development include:

1. Web: HTML5 Geolocation API

2. iOS: Google Maps API, Core Location API, Google Maps SDK, Apple Mapkit, Google places SDK

3. Android: Android location package, Google location services API, Google Maps API, Mapview class, Yandex Maps, etc.

4. For a robust web application, you can select a MEAN stack with MongoDB, Express.js, Node.js, and Angular.js.

5. Flutter, React Native, Cordova, Ionic provides a user-oriented, cross-platform mobile app.

Finishing this step means you have reached halfway in the journey.

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Step 4: Increase User Engagement

Launch your application and focus on user-engagement metrics. These signs indicate the success or failure of a business. Therefore, keep a keen and diligent eye on the factors affecting them. Improving user engagement requires satisfying their feedback, queries, etc., by making continuous improvements in the app. 

Ensure that the on and off-page elements work well, and the loading speed is adequate. The development stage is a constant process and requires proper budgeting for sustenance.

These apps drain the device’s battery significantly faster. Optimize battery usage to minimize battery consumption and lengthen the life of the smartphone. It will work as a competitive advantage.

Also, after launching the application, do not forget to interact with your customers. Maintain a two-way dialogue and make them aware of the new offers, and respond to their needs which prompts them to use the app. Also, your suggestion system based on the customer preferences and relevance will keep the users stuck to your application.

Step 5: Protect Geolocation Data

Data protection laws are becoming stricter worldwide. Therefore, location-based applications must comply with these rules and keep privacy and protection of user data a priority. Many users hesitate to use a website or an app because of the associated privacy concerns.

Therefore, firms developing such a location app must consult with privacy and data protection lawyers and incorporate practices that secure users’ data. Some of the steps they can take to maintain data privacy and security include:

  1. Multifactor authentication to ensure the accounts don’t get compromised involves having two or more verification factors to access the account

2. Encrypting communications, using an SSL certificate, Network security configuration in Android, and App Transport Security in iOS

3. Either don’t allow sensitive data storage or encrypt with robust algorithms like AES-256 or RSA.

In recent times, there have been several cases of companies selling their customers’ private information to third parties. It has brought up fear among users, making them reluctant to use such apps.

Although legal rules are becoming more assertive, there’s still a long way to go.A company must maintain its credibility and worthiness in the market. Hence, it must not indulge in any such activities and disclose material information beforehand.

Challenges in building Location based app

Building a location-based app comes with its share of challenges, ranging from technical issues to ethical considerations. Let’s dive into each of the mentioned challenges in great detail:

1. Security:

Security is a crucial aspect of location-based apps due to the sensitive nature of location data. Here are some key security challenges:

a. Data Privacy

Location data can reveal a lot about a user’s behavior and habits. Ensuring the privacy of this information is paramount to gain user trust. Developers must comply with data protection regulations and implement strong encryption and access control mechanisms to safeguard user data.

b. User Authentication

Proper authentication measures must be in place to prevent unauthorized access to location data. Multi-factor authentication, secure login methods, and token-based authentication can help in mitigating security risks.

c. Secure Data Transmission

When transmitting location data over networks, it’s crucial to use secure communication protocols such as HTTPS to prevent data interception and eavesdropping.

d. Device Security

Ensuring the security of the user’s device is vital, as compromised devices can leak location data. Encouraging users to keep their devices updated with the latest security patches and using secure devices helps mitigate this risk.

e. API Security

Many location-based apps use third-party APIs to access location data. Developers need to ensure the APIs they integrate with are secure and use proper authentication mechanisms to prevent unauthorized access.

2. Ethical Issues

Developing a location-based app also involves navigating ethical challenges, particularly concerning user consent and data usage:

a. Informed Consent

Obtaining clear and explicit consent from users to collect and use their location data is crucial. Users must be informed about how their data will be used and have the option to opt-out if they feel uncomfortable sharing their location.

b. Data Usage Transparency

Developers must be transparent about the purpose and usage of location data. It’s essential to clearly communicate how the app will benefit from the data and how it will enhance the user experience.

c. Data Sharing with Third Parties

If the app shares location data with third-party services, developers must be upfront about it and seek separate consent from users for such sharing. Users should also have the option to control which third parties can access their data.

d. Data Anonymization

In cases where aggregated location data is used for analytics or marketing purposes, proper anonymization techniques should be applied to protect user identities.

3. Positioning Accuracy

Location-based apps heavily rely on accurate positioning to provide meaningful services. Achieving high positioning accuracy can be challenging due to the following factors:

a. GPS Signal Strength

The accuracy of GPS data depends on the strength of satellite signals. Indoor environments, dense urban areas, and natural obstacles like tall buildings or mountains can weaken the signals and lead to less accurate location data.

b. Multi-path Interference

GPS signals can bounce off surfaces, causing multi-path interference and introducing errors in positioning. This is more common in urban environments with tall buildings.

c. Signal Interference

Interference from other electronic devices or radio signals can disrupt GPS signals and affect accuracy.

4. User Engagement and Adoption

User engagement and adoption are critical aspects of a successful location-based app. It involves enticing users to actively use the app and encouraging them to share their location data willingly. Here are key points to consider for better user engagement and adoption:

5. Cross-Platform Compatibility

Cross-platform compatibility refers to the ability of an application to run seamlessly on multiple operating systems and devices. For location-based apps, ensuring cross-platform compatibility is essential to reach a broader user base and improve user experience. Here are key points to consider for achieving cross-platform compatibility:

a. Frameworks and Tools: 

Use cross-platform development frameworks and tools like React Native, Flutter, or Xamarin to write code that can be easily deployed on various platforms.

b. Native API Abstraction

Use libraries that abstract native APIs, enabling access to location services consistently across platforms.

c. Testing and Debugging

Thoroughly test the app on different devices and operating systems to identify and fix compatibility issues.

d. Regular Updates

Keep the app updated to ensure compatibility with the latest versions of operating systems and devices.

Overall, building a successful location-based app requires a delicate balance between technical prowess, user-centric design, and ethical considerations to provide a valuable and secure experience to users.

Top Geolocation Apps

Numerous location apps come up every day, out of which many apps go unnoticed. It is confusing to decide which GPS-enabled navigation application you must give your storage to and which you should delete. While some applications only offer navigation facilities, others allow location-sharing and integration features.

Here is a list of the 20 best location-based apps:

  1. Google Maps
  2. Waze
  3. MapQuest
  4. Maps. me
  5. Scout GPS
  6. InRoute route planner
  7. Apple Maps
  8. Gaia GPS
  9. Karta GPS
  10. Glob
  11. ETA live traffic alert
  12. Roadtrippers
  13. Traffic Spotter
  14. OsmAnd
  15. CoPilot GPS Navigation
  16. Sygic GPS Navigation and Maps
  17. Polaris GPS Navigation
  18. Here We Go Maps and Navigation
  19. TomTom Go Navigation
  20. MapFactor Navigator

Make Such An App With Idea Usher

make a geolocation app with idea usher

Research can allow you to unfold a new scalable market and give a competitive edge. You can achieve commercial success with proper planning and development with the help of a diligent partner.

The partner you work with makes all the difference in making the project a hit or a miss. You need to work with a team that optimally uses resources and offers an affordable plan. A team like Idea Usher possesses the necessary experience, expertise, and technology to provide a plan that fits your budget right.

You can focus on growing your product once you build a team and a plan. The rise in smartphone usage makes location-based applications a necessity. As we head towards digitization and a technology-driven decade, consumers’ expectations have reached heights.

Understanding their requirements and delivering them exactly requires a team of highly qualified and expert professionals.


Developing a location-based application is no piece of cake. It requires a heavy investment of time, money, and expertise. You need to conduct adequate research, identify the need, provide a solution, detail the steps, features, functions, unique selling proposition to include, a robust app development team, consultation lawyers, etc.

Do not worry about anything, and you can contact the experts of Idea Usher to ensure the proper application development. They will help you in the making of a geolocation app. Contact details are mentioned below:

E-mail: [email protected]

Phone Numbers : (+91)9463407140, (+91)8591407140, and (+1)7329624560


Here are some exciting FAQs about these apps:

1.   How much time does it take to develop a location-based app?

Creating an app usually depends on the features and technical specifications that the user wants to include. However, the average time to develop such an app usually ranges between 4 months to 6 months.

2.   How can someone add a geolocation feature to an app?

Be cautious if you don’t have experience adding this kind of feature to your app. Finding any existing plug is rare, and you might be fortunate enough if you find such a plugin. A plugin will allow you to add geolocation features easily. Although, the best way is to hire some developers and create any such app from scratch.

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