Why does the Rain Bird app require location services be enabled?
Rain Bird does not collect a user’s personally identifiable information and Rain Bird does not sell any user data to third parties.
Beginning with Android 9 in 2018 and iOS 13 in 2019, Apple and Google added new privacy features that are intended to prevent apps from abusing your mobile device’s WiFi connection and location. These changes require Locations Services be enabled for the Rain Bird mobile app to function correctly.
During set up, the user is given the option to select from local WiFi networks to connect their Rain Bird WiFi controller. Android and iOS require location access for these networks to be viewable by a mobile application.
The Rain Bird app also uses this WiFi information when connecting to the controller to determine which communication mode should be used. Here are the three ways a Rain Bird WiFi controller communicates:
AP/HotSpot Mode: Sometimes referred to as Direct Access, the LNK WiFi Module in the Rain Bird controller emits its own wireless network for a mobile device to connect to. Communication takes place directly from the mobile device to the Rain Bird controller. HotSpot Mode must be manually enabled by the user.
LAN (Local Area Network) Mode: The Rain Bird controller is connected to the property’s wireless network while the mobile device is connected to the same network. The controller and mobile device communicate through the property’s router. This connection is made automatically when the phone is connected to the same IP address.
Relay Mode: The Rain Bird controller is connected to the user’s wireless network, while their mobile device is connected to a different wireless network or a cellular network. In Relay Mode, the controller and mobile device communicate through a Rain Bird server online. This connection is made automatically when the phone is connected to a different IP address.