Why does Android need location data to connect with my thermometer?

If your Kinsa app for Android can't connect with your Kinsa thermometer, you'll need to make sure the Kinsa app has access to your location. Otherwise, the Android operating system won't let the Kinsa app see your thermometer.

This is very strange and we don't agree with it. But here's why.

The Android operating system, not Kinsa, requires two things to connect with any Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) device, which includes our Smart Ear and QuickCare thermometers:

  1. Bluetooth must be turned on.
  2. Location permissions must be granted.

These two requirements come from the Android operating system itself, not from Kinsaand therefore cannot be overridden or worked around by Kinsa.

For more detail, here’s the relevant section of the official Android documentation to explain further:

"In order to use Bluetooth features in your application, you must declare two permissions. The first of these is BLUETOOTH. You need this permission to perform any Bluetooth communication, such as requesting a connection, accepting a connection, and transferring data.

The other permission that you must declare is ACCESS_FINE_LOCATION. Your app needs this permission because a Bluetooth scan can be used to gather information about the location of the user. This information may come from the user's own devices, as well as Bluetooth beacons in use at locations such as shops and transit facilities."

If location permissions are denied, your Android phone won't be able to "see" your Kinsa thermometer. iPhones do not share this location permission requirement, and so neither does our Kinsa app for iPhone. If you wish to send a complaint to Android about this, follow this guide. 

If location permissions were already denied and you want to go back and grant those permissions now to enable your phone to connect with your Kinsa smart thermometer, follow the steps below.

Note: Each Android phone manufacturer uses a slightly different menu. We've tried our best to provide instructions that will work with as many phones as possible, but you may need to find instructions for your particular phone.

  1. Open your phone's Settings app.
  2. Find and select Apps or Applications.
  3. If you don't see a list of all your apps, select your closest match to App Info, Application Manager or Manage Applications.
  4. Find and select Kinsa.
  5. Tap on Permissions.
  6. Turn on the switch next to Location.
  7. Open the Kinsa app
  8. Tap the ⚙️Settings Gear in the top right corner
  9. Tap Add New Thermometer
  10. Follow the on-screen instructions.