Set a location based reminder on Android – the apps you need

Be reminded by your phone when you visit a location

Set a pin in a map to mark the location

Reminders and to-do lists are very useful and we often use them to remember the tasks to be done. For tasks to be done at a specific place, set a location-based reminder with these apps.

Creating reminders, notes and to-do lists are all important activities that we frequently engage in on our phones. The phone is the perfect place for them because we carry them in our pocket, making it easy to add items, check them and be notified by them. They organise our day and never let us forget what must be done.

Reminders and to-do are often used with dates and times, to alert use when a task needs to be completed by. However, some tasks are not dependent on the time and instead, they must be carried out at a specific location.

For example, when you are shopping at the supermarket, you might need to be reminded to buy a particular item. When you arrive at work or at home, you may need to perform some task or action. When you take a trip, you may need to be reminded to text work or home to let people know you arrived OK. There are many uses for location based reminders.

Best apps for location based reminders

Some popular to-do and notes apps have built in features that enable tasks to be created not with a due date, but a location instead. Arrive at the location and the phone will alert you with a sound, alarm, and screen display so you will not forget.

Todoist and Any.do are two very popular to-do apps that include location based reminders. However, you must subscribe to these services because location based reminders are not available in the free versions of the apps.

Google Keep, Time&Place Reminder, Naplarm and Reminders are useful free apps that provide location based reminders. Let’s look at creating a reminder in Keep.

Create location-based reminders in Keep

Create a new note in Google Keep on an Android phone

Open Keep on your phone and tap Create a note at the bottom of the screen. Enter the title for the note and the note body. All the usual text, checkbox and other options are available. Tap the bell icon at the top of the screen.

Create a location-based reminder in Google Keep on an Android phone

Choose the reminder type by selecting the Place option and then tap Edit location.

Choose a location for a reminder in Google Keep on Android

Search for the place to be reminded and then tap it to select it in the search results.

Save a location based reminder in Google Keep

Save the reminder. You can add to it at any time, so if it is a shopping list, just add more items as and when you think of them. When you arrive at the location, a reminder sound is heard and the item appears in notifications.

The nice feature about Keep is that anything can be stored in a note, which can contain anything, whereas some of the alternatives are limited to a title.

Naplarm – Location alarm / GPS alarm

Price: Free | By: Yash Pradhan | Size: 7 MB | Android: 5.0 and up

Naplarm app for Android with a location based reminder

Naplarm is actually designed to be a travel app, but it makes a useful location-based reminders app too. The idea is that you set a location for the alarm, such as a train station, and then you can go to sleep. When the train reaches your station, the alarm wakes you so you can get off. No more sleeping through your train stop!

It is not just for naps on trains and it can be used anytime you need to be reminded when reaching a location, like work, home, places of interest and so on. It is an alarm, so it sounds until it is stopped, unlike a reminder chime or ding that may not be noticed.

A great feature of the app is that it shows how far away you are from the location. As you travel, the distance decreases. The accuracy is adjustable and you define a circle around the location which triggers the alarm, so you could set an alarm to one mile or just one hundred yards.

The app’s design is good and it looks very nice. The controls are easy to use and you can create favourite location reminders and pin them. A reminder can have a title and notes.

Naplarm is free with an ad at the bottom of the screen, or for a tiny payment, the ad is removed. This app is recommended.

Reminders – Task reminder app

Price: Free | By: Nick Nicolaou | Size: 5 MB | Android: 4.0 and up

Reminders Android app setting a location based reminder

Reminders is another free ad-supported app with an option to go ad-free for a small payment. Reminders based on time or location can be created and if you choose a location reminder, a map is displayed.

The map can be navigated in the usual way, zooming in and out and panning, and a tap sets the location. Locations can also be searched for, which is often a quicker way to find a place.

A radius can be set, which is the distance from the map location which will trigger the reminder and it can be a few yards or up to several miles. Add a title and selected whether to notify you next time or every time. It is very simple and very easy to use.

A notification sound is played, rather than a never-ending alarm, but there is an option to repeat the sound until you view the notification. Then you will not miss it.

This is an easy-to-use Android app, but you might wish for more features. Reminders have a title and that’s it. No body text and you cannot add items to it, like a shopping list for example.

Time&Place Reminder – calendar and tasks list

Price: Free | By: Leonid Arefev | Size: 3 MB | Android: 4.1 and up

Time&Place Reminders app for Android phone with a location based reminder

Time&Place Reminder is more of a task and to-do list manager and location based reminders is just one of many options. A reminder can ba based on time, a simple to-do/task list, things you have to do someday, and reminders at locations.

In each case, the reminder has a title, description, phone number and email. You could have a reminder to call someone or email them when you reach a particular location for example. Notes can be colour coded and have tags.

An interesting feature is that wherever text is entered, a microphone icon lets you speak instead of type. Titles and descriptions can therefore be added quickly and easily. A map can be zoomed and panned to find a location or it can be searched for, again, just speak the location. The zone can be set in which the reminder is triggered.

This app has more features than the others and it is a useful general purpose to-do and task manager. It is free and ad-free, but there is an option to donate to the developer. The app works well and has plenty of features, but some parts could look better. The Settings screen is unattractive for example.

Location based reminders not working on Android?

If location-based reminders do not work, there are several possible causes. The obvious one is the phone’s location settings are incorrect. Open the Settings app and find the location section. It varies and on my phone it is in Settings > Connections.

Android location settings on a Samsung phone

There is a master on/off switch and Location must be on. Tap it and there a Locating method setting. Tap it and there are High accuracy, Battery saving and Device only options. Battery saving may not work and the best setting is High accuracy.

Android may be putting the reminders app to sleep in order to prolong battery life and this stops the app from checking the location. Find the battery options, Settings > Device Maintenance > Battery on my phone, and make sure Power saving mode is off. There is also an Unmonitored apps setting and this is a list of apps that will never be put to sleep. Tap it and add the reminders app.

Battery usage will increase when location-based reminders are running, but these apps have to check the location and location services must be on.

Go to Settings > Notifications and enable notifications for the app. Tap the app and disable Show silently . Show content on the lock screen and if you want, set the notification as a priority. This means notifications are seen and heard even when Do Not Disturb is enabled.

Finally, go to Settings > Apps and tap the reminders app. Tap Permissions and make sure it has permission to access the location.


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