I've noticed that only some of the images I receive from a friend of mine (who also has an iPhone 5) have GPS data. (I test this by saving the picture and using a photo app to read the metadata.)

I can't figure out why some do and others don't. My friend is not changing his settings or doing anything weird. This is all through iMessage.



If Location Services are on for the Camera.app, EXIF data will include GPS data. If it is not, it will not for photos that are taken with Camera.app. Location data can be inserted on an app by app basis. I tested, for example, Camera.app, and Camera+. The former had Location Services disabled, and the latter was enabled. As expected, the former had no GPS data, while the latter did.

Furthermore, photos that are downloaded from other services may or may not contain location data. For example, Facebook strips GPS data out of photos, while Photobucket does not.

Any testing I have done has been with an iPhone 5, and also an iPad mini.

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  • Thanks, but my friend only uses the Camera.app. I'm thinking that when he edits something uses the Photos.app, it sometimes strips GPS data. – Chris Aug 26 '13 at 21:32
  • That was going to be my next caveat... I did not do any tests with editors, only with taking and sending photos directly through iMessage. I don't see Location Services for Photos.app, but maybe I'm missing something there. – Dave Aug 26 '13 at 21:34
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    Aha, I think this is a shared photostream issue where it strip GPS data if you send it from the shared stream instead of the original source – Chris Aug 26 '13 at 21:51

For the EXIF data to arrive via iMessage, ALL the recipients must have iDevices. If even one of them doesn't then it gets stripped out by Apple for everyone

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