There are plenty of times when you can’t make out where someone has taken a photo. If the information is important, it can be frustrating when you cannot get hold of the location data. While there are no assured methods you can employ to get what you want, the following ways are worth trying out:
Use the EXIF Data in Smartphone Photos
Whenever you take a photo using a phone equipped with GPS, it has the GPS coordinates of the place automatically embedded into it. You can click on the photo properties or use an online EXIF viewer to find the geographical coordinates. Now you can feed the coordinates into a Google map to know where the location was. Even though all smartphones and other digital cameras usually have GPS, you can never be sure that the photograph has the EXIF data present. The EXIF data can be absent because of two reasons. Either the camera did not have GPS, or someone uploaded the photo to a social media platform or messaging service that automatically strips the EXIF data from it. If you do not know how to identify the geographic coordinates, you can use GeoTag Images to find GPS coordinates of the photograph.
With Google Maps supporting raw GPS coordinates, it is relatively easy to find the location where the photo had been taken. However, the coordinates are not necessarily very accurate so the location could be slightly out. If the photograph is of an outdoor location, you can try to play around with the Street View of Google Maps to find the exact spot. However, this method will not work for places outside the reach of Street View or photos taken inside buildings.
Reverse Image Search
There are quite a few online reverse image search services you can use to find out where someone had shot a photo in case you do not have access to the EXIF data. By looking up the image on these search services, you may not immediately get the location but you may get information that you can use to identify the place. Even if the reverse search does not yield satisfactory results, you can try to figure out some keywords you can use to search on Google and then look at the images. The advantage of this method is that you can uncover images; you would not have been able to unearth using conventional reverse image search w. According to Photography Life, the EXIF data also contains information like the date and time when someone shot the photo, in addition to the GPS coordinates.
Using the geographical coordinates found in EXIF data embedded in the image is undoubtedly the most convenient and accurate way of finding out where someone has taken a particular photo. However, in the absence of geographical coordinates, it becomes a bit of a hit-and-miss exercise. You may need to plug way online in using various keywords to search till you are successful. Often asking other people may give you good results.