Photo Geotagging is Magic

Derrick Story
4 min readDec 6, 2021
Location information for this photo displayed in the Preview app on a Mac.

The smartphone in your pocket knows where you are every minute and automatically records those locations to the pictures that you take with it. We call this function geotagging.

It’s particularly handy when traveling. Let’s say you don’t remember where you ate that amazing red and green breakfast in New Mexico. Was it Santa Fe or Albuquerque? If you took phone pictures that morning, all you have to do is go to your favorite photo app, review the geotags for them, and find the diner’s location on a map.

Smartphones are smart. But so are our digital cameras. And one of my favorite cameras, the Fujifilm X100V, can perform the same wizardry with the assistance of the iPhone in my pocket.

Geotagging with regular digital cameras is nothing new. The feature has been around for a while. But recording that data easily is fairly recent. We can thank improved Bluetooth technology for that.

The X100V uses Bluetooth 4.2, a low energy version. My iPhone 12 Pro Max comes with version 5, also with low energy consumption. What this means is that the camera and the iPhone can have an ongoing conversation, exchanging information in real time, without draining either battery.

Since the iPhone knows where I am every minute, it can share that location with the X100V so those coordinates can be added to the picture’s metadata when I press the shutter button. Our photo applications then read those coordinates and translate them into locations that we can see on a map.

A Bakery Somewhere in Oregon

On a recent road trip, I bought a loaf of garlic sourdough bread at a family bakery. It was delicious. Really delicious.

Let’s say a year later I wanted to return to the area and look them up again. Chances are good that I would remember the location. But what if I didn’t? No worries. I could review the geo data in the picture, and even plot the route to it using the Maps app. Now all I have to do is get there early enough to buy one before they are sold out.

My favorite bakery isn’t called out by name on the Maps app. But I know exactly where it is thanks to the location point recorded by my camera.

Configuring the X100V for Geotagging