Android presence

I am having trouble getting either the Hubitat app to properly detect my presence when I come home, or life360. I have it unlocking my door, but for some reason its not consistent. I would prefer to use the Hubitat app rather than have my location be shared on life360.

What can I do to troubleshoot/fix this?

Welcome to the community.

Android apps, depending on the version of Android (mainly 9+), are optimized and not allowed to keep the phone awake to report location (or other things) frequently or at all in some firmwares unless the phone has a persistent notification tray icon from that app to make the user aware that it is always running. Because of this, since the Hubitat app doesn't have a persistent notification option to keep its background task alive, it gets slept and is at the mercy of the wake up scheduling and you are going to get somewhat mixed results from it. It will run as soon as the scheduler wakes up the phone and allows it to run. At least that is how I understand it.

I don't know how the Life360 app works but it is probably in the same boat unless it has a persistent notification always hanging out in the tray (or an option to turn one on).

What can you do to get around this?

  • Combine several forms of presence detection. You can use the community WiFi presence sensor driver which detects when a device joins the same network that the Hubitat hub is on
  • You can make the geo-location trigger area larger
  • You can use another type of device for presence; like the Samsung arrival sensor or emulate a presence sensor with one or more motion sensors
  • Use another app like Tasker that does support a persistent tray notification to do something on your phone when it detects a geo location or connects to WiFi. It could even call a Hubitat endpoint to turn on a virtual switch or something
  • Petition to the HE staff (feature request) to add a persistent notification option (for newer Android devices) so that the HE app is more responsive. This will come at the expense of battery life for sure and some people will definitely want it to be optional. (Like me... I don't want a persistent tray icon. I don't use the app's geo-location for automation.)

Anyway, there are a few options.


Make sure your battery saver is off. Go into app settings and ensure the HE app doesn't have any sleep options enabled and can use background data etc. Also I agree 100% with the advice above to use a combined presence approach. I use 3 methods - HE app, Life360, and WiFi connection to a fixed IP address. This approach is bullet proof. Many posts on the subject if you search the forum.

I use Presence Governor to unify Hubitat App, IFTTT and Amazon Alexa App presence, since using this method, arrival and departure have been very reliable. For me Hubitat App (iPhone) presence was very unreliable.