How to Quickly Share Your Location in a Text Message on Android

Let’s say your car breaks down and you have no idea where you are. You could call someone and tell them how to get to you…or you could just shoot them a quick text with your exact location from Google Maps.

This is actually an awesome feature built into Google’s Messages app—the default SMS/MMS application on Nexus and Pixel devices. If you’re not using one of those phones, however, it’s all good—you can actually download Android Messages from the Google Play Store on any Android phone.

So, go ahead and install that bad boy (if you don’t already have it, of course), and let’s dig in.

First, however, I want to point out that this isn’t the only way to share you location with someone else. You can actually do nearly the same thing directly from Google Maps, though I’d say it’s a bit more personal since you’re sharing with someone from your contacts list—someone that you already know. While you can use that method if you’d like, I think the method highlighted in this article makes more sense if you’re already having a text conversation with the other person, or if it’s someone you don’t know—like a tow truck driver, for example.

To share your location over MMS, go ahead and fire up the Android Messages app. If you just installed it, you’ll have to designate it as your default SMS/MMS app. Android only allows one app at a time to send text messages, so this is a necessary step to even test the feature we’re talking about here.

Once it’s set, go ahead and open a message. Tap the plus button (+) on the left side of the message.

From there, choose the last icon in the list.

If this is your first time using the feature, you’ll have to grant the location permission. It will immediately update your location, which could take a few seconds.

Tap “Select this location” to add it to the message. If the location is somehow incorrect, you can also swipe up to show a list of nearby locations.

 

From there, simply send it along with any text you may want to include.

The message will send, and within seconds the other person will know where you are, what’s happening, and how to find you. Once they tap the included link, it’ll automatically open in Google Maps Navigation. Bam!

Honestly, even if you don’t want to use Android Messages as your default texting apps, I’d keep this one installed just for instances like this. It makes such easy work of sharing your location, it’s worth having.

Cameron Summerson is a die-hard Android fan, Chicago Bulls fanatic, metalhead, and cyclist. When he's not pounding keys here at HTG, you can find him spending time with his wife and kids, spinning legs on the bike, chugging away on the 6-string, or being disappointed in the Bulls.