Earlier today, I enabled GPS location on my Samsung Galaxy S4 and did a Periscope broadcast out in public, so that later on I could verify the position shown on the map for the replay to check how accurate the location is. The results may shock you and could change the way you use the Periscope app for good!
When I got back home, I zoomed right in on the map to see the position of the blue dot showing my replay. You can zoom in with the Periscope app by pinching outwards with two fingers repeatedly on the map view.
Here is a screenshot of what I saw on the map, and next to it I’ve put the Google Maps version which is more detailed:
The blue dot in the first image shows where I made the broadcast from, and you can see from watching the above replay that it is in the EXACT position that I was standing in with my motorbike, right off the little road that goes into the Lidl supermarket. We aren’t talking 500 yards accuracy – it is COMPLETELY ACCURATE!!
So if you are wondering how precise the location is now you know it is precisely correct in many circumstances.
Sometimes the GPS signal might be slightly off especially if you have just switched your phone on, or you have just come out of a building where the GPS signal cannot reach, then it takes a while for your phone to triangulate the signal and calculate your exact location.
Pros and cons of enabling the location option when broadcasting
As a Periscope broadcaster we want to be found on the map because it means more viewers for our broadcasts, but on the other hand if you are at home, or outside the school gates etc, then you might not want people to know precisely where you are located.
There is the possibility of stalkers who could become obsessed with you on Periscope and try to work out exactly where you live. Every time you broadcast on Periscope, they could find out more and more precisely where you live, work, take the kids to school, etc, and they could even build up a picture over time of your daily routine.
Not only stalkers but there may be people from your past who you would prefer not knowing where exactly you live today. The other option is to switch location off, but then you lose out on viewers as you will not appear on the map view, or in the map list. If location is off the only people who will know you are live on air are the people who are following you.
How to stop people discovering where exactly you are broadcasting from
The map is excellent for discovery of new broadcasts, so my advice to you is if you want to grow your following on Periscope and protect your privacy – follow my instructions for changing your GPS location here.
You need an Android device for this to work, it does not work with iPhone – but you can pick up an Android device quite cheaply these days, even a second hand one from a pawn brokers will do the job.
Let me know in the comments below how you feel about the fact that the location is so precise in the Periscope app. Will you be using my tip to change your GPS location? I look forward to reading your thoughts.
Please share this post and follow @winsoar on the Periscope app for more tips and tricks.