As of November 8, 2019, we have made significant changes to how we capture and process locations as it related to broadcasting to users within specific locations using geofences. Previously, when a geofence was created and a broadcast was sent using that geofence, we simply took a snapshot of the users that had updated locations in that geofence and send the message to them. An "updated location" meant that the user had location services enabled, had a recent location update within the last 24 hours, and that location showed the user within the confines of the geofence.
The updates to Android Pi and iOS 13 came with enhancements to location privacy and how mobile apps could capture location data from the device. With iOS 13, for example, the first time you opened a mobile app after upgrading, you could now allow apps to only capture your location one time or only while using the app. The option to "Always allow" was no longer there. That essentially granted users a "trial period" to see if location services were actually needed for the mobile app to function. After a short period of time, iOS would then ask you again if you wanted to allow location services for that app, however on subsequent prompts, the option to "Always allow" was now present. This significantly decreased the number of users that would be captured in a geofence on the LiveSafe platform as all apps defaulted to "Only while using the app" automatically after upgrading because LiveSafe relies on the "Always allow" location feature to be able to message users appropriately, even if they haven't opened the app in a month or so.
The updates we've made intend to combat that and more accurately capture users locations (again, only if location services are enabled by the user) than ever before. When you create a geofenced broadcast, we will essentially make it an "active geofence" for a very small period of time, meaning that users can enter and exit the geofence if they are on the borders but the numbers should remain accurate during the broadcast. We will also send what's called a "Silent Push Notification" to the user to capture the location of the device (again, only if the user has enabled the permissions to do so). That silent push notification will wake the device up to allow us to capture the location data but it won't actually show a notification message to the user.
Personal user privacy is the utmost priority for LiveSafe. Each user will individually need to enable location services and notifications in order for us to capture their location. In no way, shape, or form will we (or can we for that matter) force our way into devices to capture the location if the user has not enabled the permissions to do so. When capturing users locations, we do not store or track locations over any period of time. LiveSafe only stores the most recent location update and that update is overwritten when new updates are captured.