Some Apple Watches aren't reporting GPS data after the watchOS 7 update

Apple Watch S4 Auto-Detect Workout end
Apple Watch S4 Auto-Detect Workout end (Image credit: iMore)

What you need to know

  • Some Apple Watch users are reporting that workouts aren't correctly recording GPS locations.
  • The start location is recorded, but that's it.
  • It isn't unusual for bugs to be part of one of Apple's big releases, unfortunately.

A number of Apple Watch wearers are reporting that workouts aren't correctly recording their GPS location after installing watchOS 7. While the start point is recorded correctly, nothing else appears to be.

There have been plenty of instances of this popping up on social media of late, with the story generally being the same. Start points are fine, everything else is a bust.

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A support thread on Apple's forums was spotted by 9to5Mac and, sure enough, the story matches.

I used the Outdoor Walk activity on my Watch, but this time didn't take my iPhone. When I returned, and attempted to upload the activity to Strava, I received a warning that no GPS/route data was present. I checked the Fitness and Health apps, and sure enough, there was no route on the map – only the starting point.

So far Apple doesn't appear to have an answer, other than to blame third-party apps like Strava. People have the issue regardless of the app they're using, however, suggesting this is something under Apple's control rather than third-party developers. The issue also impacts all flavors of Apple Watch that support watchOS 7, too.

Some users have reported that unpairing and then re-pairing their Apple Watch helps matters, but some have said the opposite, too. Your mileage may vary and we're now left hoping Apple fixes whatever's wrong in an update.

Oliver Haslam

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too.

Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.