Sometimes, you might need to save or share a location that doesn’t have a physical address. If you’re camping, looking for your Uber driver or meeting with a friend at a large outdoor concert venue, pinning your location can save you a lot of time — or your life. Here’s how to do it in seven common apps.
How to Drop a Pin in Google Maps
Dropping a pin in the Google Maps app is simple.
- First, open the app.
- Find the spot you want to pin on the map. Drag the map with your finger until you find the specific location.
- Long press the spot until a red pin icon appears.
Now, you should have several options. You can save the location to a list, such as Favorites, Want to go, Travel plans or Starred places. You can get directions to the spot or copy the GPS coordinates at the top of the screen, allowing you to save the coordinates in a note or send them to somebody. Or, you can share the location or give it a unique label.
Dropping a pin in Google Maps is extremely helpful for finding your car in a large parking lot, backtracking to a trailhead where you started hiking or saving locations you visit frequently.
How to Drop a Pin in Google Earth
More advanced than Google Maps, Google Earth has detailed 3D maps of almost the entire globe. Use it to measure distances, see satellite imagery and get a sense of topography.
- Open the Google Earth app.
- Navigate to the spot you’d like to pin.
- Long press on the spot until a red pin icon appears.
When the “Dropped Pin” box appears at the bottom of the screen, you can long press it to copy the GPS coordinates to your clipboard. Or, press “Measure” to measure the distance between the dropped pin and another location. This technique is helpful for estimating walking distances.
How to Drop a Pin in Apple Maps
If you have an iPhone, it likely came equipped with Apple Maps. Here’s how to drop a pin in the app:
- Open Apple Maps, which may simply be labeled “Maps,” on your iPhone.
- Navigate to the location you want to pin by dragging the map.
- Long press on the spot until a red pin icon appears.
The app will estimate how long it would take to walk or drive to the pinned location depending on how far away it is. The “Move” button pulls up satellite imagery and lets you move the pin to a more detailed location. “More” allows you to add the pin to Guides, Favorites or Maps.
If you scroll down, you can see the exact address and GPS coordinates of the pin. Long press either one and select “Copy” to copy it to your clipboard.
Underneath the GPS coordinates section, you can also make suggestions for Apple to add the pinned location to the app. You can inform Apple of a missing address, street, traffic sign or light, business, school, park, neighborhood, transit stop, bike path or walking path. Or, you can inform the company of something else by taking a photo of it and typing in a description.
Finally, you can add the pinned location to your Favorites list to save it.
How to Drop a Pin in Messages on iPhone
This feature allows you to share your exact location via text message on an iPhone. In some countries, you can even text emergency services and use this feature to help them find you.
- Open Messages.
- Start a new message or open an existing thread.
- Below the chat box, there will be a horizontal string of icons. If Google Maps isn’t already listed, scroll to the right and click “More.” You have to have Google Maps downloaded on your phone for it to appear in the options menu.
- Select Google Maps.
You’ll have two options when the map opens. You can either share your real-time location for an hour or send your current location. Either option may also share your name, photo, where you’ve been recently, how you’re traveling — such as on a bike or in a car — and information about your iPhone, such as its battery life.
To enable the location-sharing feature, you need to give the app permission in your iPhone settings.
How to Drop a Pin in Messenger
Formerly known as Facebook Messenger, the Messenger app allows you to send a pinned location.
- Tap the name of the person you want to message. You can even send a message to yourself to test out the process.
- To the left of the chat box where you type, there’s a triangular arrow icon that lets you share your location. Click on this icon.
- Give the app permission to use your location.
- From there, you can start sharing your live location. Or, click on the Pin icon — which looks like a downward-facing, rounded teardrop with a black circle on it — to drop a pin.
- Click “Send location” to share the pinned location with the other person.
How to Drop a Pin in Uber
Uber has become one of the most popular rideshare apps in the world. In the last quarter of 2020, 93 million people used the app, a full 19% increase compared to the previous three months. Dropping a pin in Uber allows your driver to locate you more easily.
- Open the Uber app.
- Click “Where to?”
- Click “Set location on map.”
- Drag the map to move the pin icon. Or, type in an address to pull up a location that’s farther away, then manually move the pin until you find the right spot.
The location of the dropped pin will now be your pickup spot.
How to Drop a Pin in DoorDash
Is your address hard to find? If so, dropping a pin can help your DoorDash driver locate you faster.
- Open the DoorDash app and place an order.
- At checkout, click “Edit” next to your delivery address.
- Select “Tweak Pin Location.”
Now, you can drag the pin to the exact location where you want your driver to bring your food.
A Helpful Feature
As long as location services are enabled on your device, many apps allow you to drop a pin, share your current location or share your tracked location over time. This feature isn’t just handy — it can help you find your way home or let people pinpoint your location in an emergency. Make sure to practice dropping a pin in different apps so you know how to do it when you need to.
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