Facebook’s new privacy settings for Android 10 and iOS 13 explained

Facebook and privacy are two terms that clash with each other. With the arrival of 10 and iOS 13, there will be some new features related to privacy and, in particular, the sharing of your location. If you are using an iOS or Android device, you will now have more control over your data.

What’s the difference with Android 10?

At the moment, with Android 9 Pie, you can access the menu of your device and scroll through the list of your apps to see which of them have access to geolocation, i.e. the exact location of your device.

If you do not want to give Facebook this information, you have the option to deactivate the permission by moving the switch sideways. Even if you turn it off, you can still use the Facebook app but you’ll have to give up features like Find Wi-Fi, Friends nearby, viewing events in your area as well as custom ads.

Facebook Android9

With Android 10, Google introduces an extra level of privacy allowing users to decide whether the app will be able to access the geolocation always or only while using the app itself. Three options are now displayed:

  • Allow all the time
  • Allow only while using the app
  • Deny
Facebook Android10

This is actually a feature that Facebook had already introduced in its app but now will also have to consider the preference expressed in the settings of the device. The one who gets the better of the two preferences will be the more restrictive one.

What’s the difference with iOS 13?

On Android iOS 13 the options displayed will no longer be three as at the moment but four:

  • Always
  • Only in use
  • Never
  • Only once

This last item is self-explanatory: selecting it allows the Facebook app to access the precise location of the device only in that instance. Apple also introduces a notification system that alerts users when an app uses background geolocation, how often it accesses this information, and why it requires such access.

Both Android and iOS updates offer users the opportunity to have more control over their privacy. And if you have to wait a few months before receiving Android 10 on your device, in the meantime you can rely on Facebook settings to restrict the app’s access to your location.


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