iOS 13: How to Disable Bluetooth and Location Access for Apps on iPhone

Every year, Apple gives users better control over their security and privacy. In iOS 13 and iPadOS 13, Apple has introduced two new features giving users precise control over when they share location data with apps, and which app has access to Bluetooth. Here’s everything you need to know about how to disable Bluetooth and Location access for apps in iOS 13 and iPadOS 13.

Some apps have been using Bluetooth and Wi-Fi information in the background to figure out your location. To combat this, Apple is scrambling Wi-Fi and Mac ID data, and giving the users the control over which app needs Bluetooth access. You should know that this has nothing to do with the media playback using Bluetooth devices. That will work normally, as it goes via the system Bluetooth and AirPlay feature.

Apps use Bluetooth for many legit reasons as well. For example, Bluetooth is used to set up devices like Google Home and it’s used to find Google Chromecast in all Google apps. This means that many apps that you open the first time after installing iOS 13 will throw the new Bluetooth access dialog. You’ll be left scratching the head as to why exactly does this app need access to Bluetooth.

How to Disable Bluetooth Access For Apps on iPhone

As this is a privacy issue, it’s best to disable Bluetooth access for all apps, unless something in the app stops working. Then, you can go to Settings and enable/disable Bluetooth access for an app at any given time. Here’s how it works:

Step 1: Open the Settings app and go to the Privacy section.

Step 2: Here, select the Bluetooth option.

Step 3: Now go through this list and tap on the toggle next to the app’s name to disable/enable Bluetooth access.

How to Control Location Access For Apps on iPhone

iOS 13 changes the Location Services feature in a big way. Apple will no longer grant constant background location access to an app immediately. In the new popup for Location Services, there is no “Always Allow” option.

Instead, you’ll see these options: Allow While Using App, Allow Once, and Don’t Allow. Once you use the Allow While Using App, and after the app has requested your location multiple times in the background, you’ll see a new popup, telling you so. And from here, if you choose, you can tap on the Always Allow button to give the app constant background location access.

As you might have noticed, the Allow Once option is new. It will give the app location access only until you quit the app. This is great when you’re using less-than-trustworthy apps like Uber.

You can also change the Location access at any time from Settings.

Step 1: Open the Settings app and go to the Privacy section.

Step 2: Tap on Location Services.

Step 3: From this list, select the app in question.

Step 4: You’ll see a couple of options here: You can choose Never, Ask Next Time, While Using the App, and if available, Always.

Your Thoughts?

What are your thoughts on the new privacy features in iOS 13? Do you think this will help you game more peace of mind? Share your opinions with us in the comments below.

We’re working on bringing you more detailed guides for how to use the new and awesome features in iOS 13. Once you’ve read our iOS 13 tips and tricks article, read our how-tos below.