Blue Location icon Dynamic Island

I set up my new iPhone 14 Pro Max and noticed a big blue location icon in the dynamic island.

Found out it’s because I didn’t allow Arc’s location access to be ‘Always’.

Once I changed it the blue icon disappeared.

Sharing because it might help someone.

I think it’s possible for apps to prompt a user for the Always permission. Would be nice if Arc would prompt you for that when it notices the permission is missing.

Alternatively a status message in the app at the top might tell users to change that permission in Settings > Privacy > Location Services

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Ah yeah, this whole flow for location permission requesting has been a mess since around iOS 13 I think.

Apple made it impossible to request “Always” on first request, even if the app really does need it. So apps have to first request “When using the app”, then later request “Always”. Which is just… I don’t have nice words for that.

So what Arc does is request “When using the app” first, then once the app goes into the background it will request “Always”. But it’s easy to dismiss that second request without noticing.

I was undecided at the time whether Arc should then also put some warning in the UI, saying “yo, that Always permission was kinda important. plz go to Settings”. But at the time Apple made this change (I think around iOS 13) Arc could technically still mostly function normally even without Always permission, as long as Arc didn’t have to be launched silently in the background. So I figured some people might want that extra more aggressive location icon at the top of the screen, and if that’s their thing, I should leave them to it.

But in retrospect, it probably is worth a warning in the UI somewhere.

Yeah that makes sense.

And that’s a nice way of putting it. The blue location icon is indeed a bit aggressive, and if it’s always on because of Arc it also completely renders the functionality of that icon useless for any other app because it will never make you think ‘Hey what’s going on there is an app using my location without me asking for it’.

And it might cause confusion when combined with Google Maps or any other GPS based app that uses that to allow a user to tap on it to quickly jump back to their ‘main’ GPS app that is active. When Arc is not on ‘Aways allow’ it will be one of the GPS apps that the interface will toggle to and that might be a bit messy.

It does create the use case for ‘power users’ who want to use that blue location icon as a quick way to jump to Arc any time of the day. Although one could argue how that is more like a workaround/hack.

Anyway, a warning in Arc sounds like a good way indeed to help people who unintentionally dismissed the Always request to set up permissions properly and this will probably what most people will be looking for.

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