iPad 2 Cannot Determine Location?

So you just bought a shiny new iPad 2 and you tap on Google Maps and what happens? You get a message saying “Cannot Determine Location”! Well that sucks! A $600+ device better be able to find itself on a map, right! Well, if you have an iPad 2 3G, there are a couple of things you can try before taking it to the Apple store and getting it serviced.

Before I begin, however, I want to note that this should apply to both the iPad 2 Wi-Fi only and iPad 2 Wi-Fi + 3G. It’s interesting because if you have an iPad 2 with 3G and you disable the Wi-Fi network, Google Maps will tell you to enable Wi-Fi in order to get better accuracy of your location. So if anyone tell you that you won’t get a good location using Wi-Fi, it’s not true. You should be able to get just as good accuracy with Wi-Fi as with 3G.

Method 1 – Power Cycle

So the first thing you can try is to do a simple power cycle. Press the button on the top of the iPad until the red slider bar shows up and then turn the device back on. Some people have said that you might have to do this three times and then the location starts to work again.

There is also a variation of this that seems to work for some folks. First, you turn off location services, then forget your wi-fi network, then hard reset the iPad 2, then turn it back on, turn on wi-fi, then turn on location services again.

You can turn off location services by going to Settings and then tapping Location Services. Tap the On/Off Toggle button.

IMG 0074

You can forget the WiFi network by simply tapping the Wi-Fi option under Settings and then tapping the blue arrow next to the wifi network.

wifi network

At the very top, you’ll see a big button that says Forget this Network. Go ahead and tap that.

forget network

Now perform a hard reset of your iPad 2. You can do this by pressing the top button and the bottom button at the same time. You will see the red slider appear, but continue to hold the two buttons. After a few seconds the entire iPad will turn off. Wait about a minute and then press the top button to turn it on again. Then turn on Wifi and turn on location services after. Then go to Google Maps.

Method 2 – Reset Network Settings & Location Warning

The second thing you can try is to reset network settings. You can do this by going to Settings, then General and then going all the way to the bottom and tapping Reset. Then tap the Reset Network Settings option. Also, go ahead and tap the Reset Location Warnings button too.

reset network settings

It’s best to perform a hard reset of the iPad after you have reset the network settings and the location warnings. Turn back on and see if you’re in luck.

Method 3 – Install Latest iOS

At this point, you should also make sure you have the latest version of iOS installed, which is version 5 right now. iOS 5 has a lot of new features and bug fixes, so it could possibly fix the problem on your device. It’s best to perform a clean install of iOS 5 if you can.

Method 4 – Restore iPad 2

Another more drastic option, but one that can work, is to restore your iPad 2. Restoring isn’t as bad as it sounds and you won’t lose any of your data. If you haven’t already upgraded to iOS 5, it’s best to follow the instructions in the link I provided in Method 3. This will clean install iOS 5 and then restore all your data.

You can also perform a restore from a previous backup by going to iTunes, selecting your iPad in the list on the right and clicking Restore.

restore ipad

You’ll have the option to perform a backup before you do the restore, which is always a good idea. Hopefully, the problem will go away once you have finished restoring the device.

At this point, there is nothing else out there to fix this problem! The only other option is to call Apple support and talk to a tech or to take the iPad down to your local Apple store and see if they can get you a new one or repair your current one. If you have any other solutions, post a comment here!

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