The problem is that your phone needs to get messages from at least satellites at a time to provide you with location data. So for better signal you should at least be outdoors. In addition urban canyons reduce the GPS signal accuracy since receiver is limited to connect the necessary amount of satellites at a time. In other words: the more sky view you have, the more accurate signal you get. Brick walls, high concrete buildings, trees, mountains and even human body!
Give your phone a huge portion of a clear sky to catch the necessary info for you not to get lost.
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And then, concrete jungles are wrong place to get pure positioning. The more innovative device you have — the more accurate data you get. GPS is about precise figures, coordinates and exact time so any signal bounce, blocking or even slight disturbance result in significantly inaccurate data on your location. So now you know that GPS is very dependent on various aspects and here are some tips and tricks that will allow you to get the most precise location data on a specific device.
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Just believe that if you have iPhone 4S for example for the full list of devices go here , you already use it. The app will track you only once when you launch and pinpoint your location saving your battery this way. By working via PathSense server the app performs at no internet connection and sometimes even more accurate than time-honoured GPS.
In addition, the future GPS 2. Mostly via WiFi. I can have tbe beverages ready when he walks in tbe door. Requires iOS 9. Compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. App Store Preview. This app is only available on the App Store for iOS devices. Screenshots iPhone iPad. Description iMapp will help you to track your friends and relatives who are connected to the service as well as assisting you in finding a person's location by using just a phone number, regardless of the installed app on his device.
Jul 12, Version 2. Size Category Navigation. Compatibility Requires iOS 9. I recently checked my location data on Google I have history enabled on this because it's useful for me and I reset it every once in a while and I was amused to see that when my gps is off my phone gets plotted over 3 km away from my usual route into places I've not been to.
I attribute part of it to the tower issue and part of it to the fact that it falls back to some Internet node that is located at that specific place. So, yeah, location data is some sort of rough approximation unless of course you got a GPS. And even then there are quite a few meters of difference. On a side question, what's the precision of phone GPS? Anyway back to the story, it's good to rise awareness of these issues because people will be better equipped to counter such "evidence". Also, this pleading guilty thing seriously needs to change in the US.
Josh in CharlotteNC profile , 9 Sep am. The short answer is how many GPS signals you're getting. With 4 clear signals, accuracy is meters. Can't find specifics on less, but I know I've been in situations where my phone thinks I'm half a mile or more away from where I actually am frequently indoors in a very large building, so probably getting less than the 4 signals.
Anonymous Coward , 9 Sep am. You absolutely need 4 or more GPS signals to get a fix. Reason is that there are 4 variables to solve. Location in 3 coordinates plus time. Now for specialized situations time keeping with a fixed location , you can get by with only 1 GPS signal. Reason for that is because the geographic location of the receiver is fixed and already known.
But for a mobile receiver, you need a minimum of 4 unless said receiver happens to have an atomic clock. But phones definitely don't have such a stable time source. JF profile , 9 Sep am. Even if your location is fixed how do you determine your location with only one GPS signal?
You don't, you already know where you are. If you're at a fixed known location you can calculate what signal you should be receiving from any one GPS signal. It in essence can confirm your location, but as you already knew where you were there isn't a lot of value in it. Unless you are checking to see if you've moved.
In which case you'll confirm you know where you are, or you'll know you're lost. If your location is fixed, a GPS time source will use 4 signals to determine the location and time. Once the location is then known, just 1 signal is needed to determine the time. Simple math. You need as many signals as there are unknowns to determine. Location is three unknowns. Time is another.
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If you know 3 of them location , then you just need 1 signal. Michael , 9 Sep am. It takes 3 GPS satellites to get pretty good accuracy, 4 to get very good accuracy, and more satellites will continue to improve the accuracy. GPS uses times being sent by satellites that are in known positions. The clock in your phone is nowhere near accurate enough to use, so the times sent from the satellites are actually used to determine what time it is at your location as well as the distance to the satellite.
GPS receivers assume you are on the face of the planet, so if you knew the time, you would know the distance to two satellites and your location, but you need at least a third to determine the time and then would need a fourth to stop assuming the altitude. After that, additional satellites will help your device calculate a more accurate time at your location and that will make the distance to each satellite more accurate.
My tracker is displaying an inaccurate position.
As for the cellular end of this - the cell towers do not transmit hyper-accurate time information and their locations to your handset, so at best you can get intersection information based on signal strength - the time the signal takes to get to the cell phone cannot be measured by the equipment in the phone accurately enough to be worth anything. What IS happening now is the phones are using GPS technology for E and transmitting it back to the towers so the towers do actually have an accurate picture of where the phone is.
You need the tape measure to stay out and you need to process, and to do that you need to disable duty cycling. His interests include mobile and ubiquitous computing. In addition urban canyons reduce the GPS signal accuracy since receiver is limited to connect the necessary amount of satellites at a time. Well it would be nice if it videos you and not the person next to you. The transcript of a talk given to Android developers earlier this year, this article gives a short overview of location in smartphones, introduces Wi-Fi round-trip time technology and standards, and then explains the Wi-Fi application programming interfaces. The data is transmitted via radio signals and such technology is most used now for vehicles, planes, boats etc. His main focus is reducing battery consumption of location, as well increasing location accuracy.
Several models of cell phones have a barometer. They can use the ambient air pressure to estimate the altitude, combined with an approximate position guess from cell towers and wifi access points, and a timing guess from the network cell or NTP , and get a faster GPS fix a GPS fix is faster if the GPS knows somewhat where it is. Yes, it measures the time for the signal to get to the cell phone. It's easy to measure the distance with radio: send a "ping" to the other side, wait for the answer, and divide the time it took by two. That method is even used to locate deep space probes with high precision.
Are the clocks in cell phones that precise? John Fenderson profile , 9 Sep pm. Yes, they do. That's actually pretty slow by today's clock rates. Bengie , 9 Sep am.
GPS needs 4 signals because it measures 3 dimensions, cellphones only need 2 dimensions, so only 3 signals are needed. More are better if they can be used. I've been seeing some professional applications of gps where they can get precisions of 1 centimeter after processing the raw satellite data. I'm inclined to think that acquiring more satellites will only get you up to a certain precision. Better sensors along with other geo location tools ie: cell phone towers? As for the phone I think meters seem reasonable considering it usually can't pinpoint which lane you are when you have two parallel roads.
John Fenderson profile , 9 Sep am. The way GPS works is that all the GPS satellites send out a synchronized timecode generated by an on-board atomic clock that has a precision of around nanoseconds, if I remember correctly. Since all the satellites are sending the same timecode at the same moment, the receiver simply identifies when it has received the timecodes from all the satellites it can see, then compares the actual time they were received with the time they were sent the timecode itself.
The discrepancies between the timecode and when the signal was received are then compared and used to "triangulate" it's not really triangulation, but similar to that. US GPS satellites used to intentionally introduce a random fluctuation to artificially limit the accuracy, but they stopped doing that a number of years ago.
So, the quality of the receiver affects accuracy in a number of ways, from how many satellite signals it can receive, to how quickly and accurately it can do the math, to how accurate its timekeeping is. Inexpensive GPS receivers such as in phones are not terribly accurate. The actual limit, if you're only using GPS signals, is 10cm. However, you can increase this resolution by using things like fixed ground-based GPS refrerences.
David , 9 Sep am. Even with 4 satellites, it can be worse than that. Reflections off nearby glass buildings can put your location off by a couple of blocks sometimes, too. Indeed yes. In some parts of downtown which has plenty of glass and metal high-rises , the GPS will almost always put me a few blocks away from where I actually am.
GPS is good to about 30 feet 10 meters , but the cops don't know that either. A few years ago, a friend was run over and killed while riding his bike home from his night-shift job. Part of the "evidence" used to claim that he somehow deserved to die, was that the GPS data from the app he was using to record his bicycling activity put him in the street instead of on the sidewalk, 3 feet away and BTW, map-aware programs will often 'snap' your reported GPS location to roads.
Celebrim , 10 Sep am.
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That said, an error of up to 1m is hardly unbelievable, and in the case your example you'd also have to accurately measure the position of the roads rather than rely on maps since the data on the map could be wrong, or as you said, the application could be influencing the data. I'd consider GPS data to be useful to only to strengthen other physical evidence position of the bike, marks on the road, example.
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GPS data in the absence of other physical data or contradicting other physical data is useless. I don't believe "GPS is good to about 30 feet". I've owned several GPS phones over the years, and their accuracy varies widely. I'd love to know why. I'd love to see a review comparing the accuracy of GPS in different phone models.
Nina , 2 Jul am. Agree, even those apps which claim that they are specifically designed for accurate mobile monitoring can't not suffer from GPS errors.
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Resulting glitches and customer disappointment. Even paid parental control apps like thespybubble. Georgia Watson , 8 Oct pm. In non-tech words, what does this mean? A single tower? Multiple towers? Source: I have worked with E services. Inwoods profile , 9 Sep am. I assumed e WAS what they used to locate. Does that have to be set off remotely first? Could you expand on that a bit? My understanding is that when there's multiple towers, the signals can be triangulated and the location of the phone can be calculated accurately.
That's how, for example, the map application in a phone knows where the phone is located. Is that right? As far as I know cell phones do not use the GPS sat signals. They triangulate their location based on cell towers using the method I described. Which is why I keep an ancient Tom Tom around. When I don't have a cell signal the Tom Tom still functions.
Chronno S. Trigger profile , 9 Sep am. This is not correct. I can access GPS information when I don't have cell signal. What you might be thinking of is you can't access the maps without cell signal, but if the maps are already downloaded then it works fine. Google recently released an update to Google Maps to do exactly this. The chip to get GPS signal is really tiny, from there it's just processing.
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