How to set your default location in Windows 10 and why is it useful?

The Anniversary Update for Windows 10 brought a small but interesting change to the privacy settings of our devices. It's called "Default location" and it's a piece of information that the operating system and your apps can use when a precise location of your device cannot be detected. Setting your default location is as easy as pie, and it's also quite useful, as you will learn in this guide:

How to set your default location in Windows 10

In order to change your default location in Windows 10, you must first open the Settings app. A quick way to do this is to click or tap its button from the Start Menu. However, there are also lots of other ways, which we covered here: 9 Ways to open the Settings app in Windows 10.

Inside the Settings app, click or tap the Privacy section.

On the left side of the window, click or tap on Location.

On the right side of the Settings window, scroll until you find the section called Default location. It will tell you that "Windows, apps, and services can use this when we can't detect a more exact location on this PC". Click or tap on the "Set default" button.

The previous action will open the Maps app. In it, you'll find a dialog box in which Windows 10 shows you the same message about your default location being used when a more exact location can't be detected on your device.

Click or tap the "Set default location" button.

All you have to do to set your default location is select it on the map, enter your address or click/tap on a location from your history.

Once you perform any of these actions, Windows 10 will immediately register your new location, without having to ask for any additional confirmations.

Why is it useful to have a default location set in Windows 10?

This is a legitimate question to ask, and the answer is very simple. If you paid attention to the steps from the previous section of this article, you already have the answer : "Windows, apps, and services can use this when we can't detect a more exact location on this PC".

Nowadays, both Windows 10 and your installed apps, can request and use your location. They do that so they can give you personalized information that is dependent on your physical location. With the help of these tracking systems, you can get very helpful information such as restaurants near you, the cinemas nearby, the tourist attractions near you and so on. When your Windows 10 device cannot detect your precise location, it can instead use the default location that you set for it.


If you're not overly concerned about your privacy settings and the way Windows 10 and apps use the information they can get about your physical location, then setting a default location for your device can be helpful when Windows 10 can't detect a more precise location. There are many apps that rely on your location to provide you with useful contextual information, and many more are developed each day. These days, it seems that everyone wants to tailor their services as close to you as possible. Whether you want that or not, is another discussion, for another article. For now, you know how to set a default location for your Windows 10 device and you also know why it can be useful. Will you set it, or will you not? Share your thoughts with us in the comments section below.