Why does Deco Android App require location permission? (Android 6.0+)

Why does Deco Android App require location permission? (Android 6.0+)
Why does Deco Android App require location permission? (Android 6.0+)
2019-01-15 23:36:27 - last edited 2019-01-22 21:18:18

Why does the Deco Android App need location permission?

During the setup of a Deco Mesh Wi-Fi system, the Deco App on Android may require access to the location settings on the Android phone being used to complete the installation. This is required by Android 6.0 or later versions. When a device running Android 6.0 or later initiates a Bluetooth or Wi-Fi scan in the background, the corresponding App must have access to the location settings for greater data protection. When you're adding a Deco unit through Deco App installed on your Android phone (Android 6.0 or later), the Deco App will search for the nearby Deco units via Bluetooth or Wi-Fi scans, permitted access to the device location will be required.

 

Do I need to enable the location permission all the time?

The location permission is used only during the setup process. Once you complete the setup, you can disable the location permission. However, if you want to add an additional Deco unit to your Deco network later, the App may ask for the permissions again.

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6 Replies
Re:Why does Deco Android App require location permission? (Android 6.0+)
2021-03-08 22:40:02 - last edited 2021-03-08 22:40:35

@Carl It seems that TP-Link doesn't even care to answer this properly. See my related post here:

 

https://community.tp-link.com/us/home/forum/topic/256368

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Re:Why does Deco Android App require location permission? (Android 6.0+)
2021-03-09 19:11:06

@ije2jira 

 

I reviewed the thread, which is fairly new and you are currently coversing with @Tony.  However if your are concerned why location settings are neeed how does this post not answer that.  It is needed as part of the software on your phone to access your phone's bluetooth or wireless to scan for nearby devices. It is only used to add new decos to the network and after that if you so choose you can resind the permission.  Just know that if new Deco units are being added you will need to give the permission again. 

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Re:Why does Deco Android App require location permission? (Android 6.0+)
2021-03-09 19:28:27 - last edited 2021-03-09 19:29:25

@Carl Location isn't required for bluetooth anymore. This was fixed in like 2015. However, your privacy policy makes it clear that you'll collect any information possible, so it seems the requirement is merely on your end for data collection purposes.

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Re:Why does Deco Android App require location permission? (Android 6.0+)
2021-03-09 19:38:01

@ije2jira 

 

Needing location and the data collection in the privacy policy are two different things.  If you look at the link in the developer notes for Android 6.0 it does explain that the phone's OS requires the device indentifer or localtion.  This is why we included the link so that customer would undersatand it is not TP-Link requiring it, that it is Android requiring it.  If you notice its not a requirement in iOS as the post is only related specficially to setup using Android 6.0 or higher.   

 

 

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Re:Why does Deco Android App require location permission? (Android 6.0+)
2021-03-09 19:56:52

@Carl There are work arounds to not require location services in Android even with bluetooth. However, you could not make bluetooth a requirement for configuring the device. It doesn't really make sense to have it as a requirement. Given that the user must already connect to the WiFi network beforehand, requesting location services for bluetooth seems unnecessary and like a major redflag for privacy.

 

Second, you could enable configuration through the web interface. Therefore a user could simply connect to the device SSID or via ethernet and configure the device like most routers do.

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Re:Why does Deco Android App require location permission? (Android 6.0+)
2021-03-10 21:48:53

@ije2jira 

 

But again the requirement for location is of the Phones OS, not with TP-Link's use of the service.  Our use of the service is purely for ease of setup and to assist in the transmission of the configuration from the base unit to the satalite units.  We would not build our official apps and services to circumvent requirements from the OS so work around while they may or may not be available would not come into play for official apps from US.  

 

The Deco as with most Mesh services were designed around ease of use and App based control.  while some manufactures may have now added web-based UI support TP-Link's Deco are not equiped with such a feature.  While some models do have a very basic and limited web UI control is still based on the concept the product line was designed under which is ease of use through the management app.  This can change and we will send your comments up in our weekly and monthly customer request form but for now control is app exclusive. 

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