So I started playing Pokemon Go. There is one thing that is kind of irritating to me. Normally I play with my smartphone at hand looking for the next Poke-Stop or Arena, but sometimes I'm not playing actively. For those occasions I would like to just start the app and put the phone in my pocket and when I get an vibration alarm I know that there is a Pokemon near so I can act on it.

Thing is, the GPS gets turned of soon as the android display timeout kicks in an turns my display to black. So the game does not work properly anymore

I could not find out if it is an android settings thing that I can change somehow, or if it is the game which turn of GPS so you go and buy the nice little wearable that they sell...

Does anyone know a solution to this problem?

  • Probably just called "power save" or similar in android. Exact details of the feature are often altered by the phone manufacturer.
    – ewanm89
    Commented Jul 11, 2016 at 10:51
  • 1
    Yes, this drives me crazy
    – Taegost
    Commented Jul 11, 2016 at 13:57
  • That feature might be missing in order to sell more of these: pokemongo.com/en-us/pokemon-go-plus But maybe these also only work in battery saver mode, in which case my point is moot. Commented Jul 11, 2016 at 14:29
  • If I understand you correctly, you're assuming that Go will still buzz for Pokémon even if your screen is inactive - this is simply not the case, you must be actively using the app. Battery saver won't keep your phone from sleeping.
    – jackwise
    Commented Jul 11, 2016 at 19:27

6 Answers 6


Two steps to "fix" this, although I admit it's a little bit of a hassle:

  1. Go to your android system settings, and change your display timeout to the longest you can find, usually either 10 minutes, 30 minutes or infinite, depending on your phone

  2. In the settings menu of Pokemon GO, activate the "battery saving" checkbox.

In the battery savings mode, the app will detect if you turn your phone upside-down, and turn the screen black without actually turning it "off" in the sense of a locked screen. This way you should be able to toss it in your pocket without the GPS turning off, as your phone will still consider the app as actively using the screen.

At least this strategy works fine on my Galaxy S7. Just remember to check it within your max. display timeout time window so it won't actually lock the screen in you pocket.

  • 2
    And if you have no gyroscope like me, battery saving does nothing for you.
    – Zikato
    Commented Jul 28, 2016 at 11:53
  • @Zikato that is indeed unfortunate. Which phone is fulfilling the Pokemon GO install requirements but is shipped without a gyro though?!
    – kasoban
    Commented Jul 28, 2016 at 13:15
  • For me Lenovo P70-A.
    – Zikato
    Commented Jul 29, 2016 at 5:38

It's inherent to Android that GPS turns off when the screen's off as well, to save power. There are however multiple apps that will allow you to circumvent this limitation, such as Tasker and others.


When the little GPS Pokemon Go Accessory comes out this will fix your problem.. the app will stay open when the phone is off/locked via bluetooth via GPS. The accessory will then flash green or vibrate depending on the setting you've set it to, to warn you that there is a Pokemon near by.

  • 1
    Do you have a source for this information? Commented Jul 14, 2016 at 16:39

There's an app called GPS keeper that keeps the GPS on while the screen is off, and while you're not in an app the uses GPS. I haven't tried it yet,but it should work in principle!


Im new to android but assume it works for all/most phones atleast. (former nokia fanboy so been using windows phone) But on my s7 if i activate developer mode i can turn of the sleep mode while the phone is charging. So with this and a powerbank connected to your phone you can keep it out of sleep mode and keep the GPS active atleast until the powerbank is empty. And there are some realy cheap powerbanks to buy if you dont want to invest to much.


other way to avoid that problem is enable stay awake option in developer option. And keep charging your phone. Wireless charging not working thou

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