3GS GPS is wonky

Discussion in 'iPhone Tips, Help and Troubleshooting' started by thor79, Jul 11, 2009.

  1. thor79 macrumors 6502

    thor79

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2008
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    #1
    This is more of a look for confirmation than anything...I suspect that it's just my 3GS that's doing this and not an issue anyone else will really have or it will be limited to only a couple of people or something. Does your GPS work on your 3GS? Does it track you properly...as well as the 3G did?

    Basically...the GPS doesn't work right. When it is able to pinpoint my location (where there is no blue circle showing the estimated range)...it can't accurately track in Google Maps...it'll pop up once...and after I move it might update once every 30 seconds or so. Most of the time it can't establish that high of a confidence level though...so it has a huge estimation circle around it...and again it only updates like once every 30 seconds...if that. It does work for brief times...maybe a minute at a time...but the location will show me driving through the middle of a neighborhood I'm driving by...or through a lake I'm passing. Basically when it's able to track...it is tracking inaccurately by like 200 feet.

    This is done while in my Belkin TuneBase FM...or just in my hand (did this to confirm it wasn't the TuneBase interfering)...doesn't matter. Now keep in mind my 3G works just fine...tracks just fine from the same positions under the same conditions. Also took my phone out of my case (Contour Flick)...just in case...and again, no difference. My 3G of course, had no issues with my Flick.

    My 3G could, of course, easily track my movements. Doing 80 down the tollway was no problem. Not really robust enough to do turn by turn...but for basic tracking it was accurate and responsive.

    No matter what I get here...I'll be taking this up with Apple...just want to see if anyone else has experienced this.

    Also note: I did have the LCD replaced for a uneven warmer screen (a yellow screen) the day after I got it (had LCD replaced last Wednesday)....and I did not test the GPS before having the LCD replaced. So I suspect either the unit is defective to begin with...or when it was reassembled something was done incorrectly, causing the GPS to malfunction. In it's current state is definitely unacceptable by any standard.
     
  2. 1rottenapple macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2004
    #2
    Mine does that too but I thought that was normal since it uses the inferior A-gps technology.
     
  3. thor79 thread starter macrumors 6502

    thor79

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2008
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    #3
    A-gps, or assisted GPS...just increases the speed of the gps fix, it is just as accurate and is actually superior speedwise. It establishes a general location lock using cell towers...then uses regular gps (which takes longer because it has to receive signals from multiple satellites) to establish the more accurate fix.

    The speed of the gps in the iphone is not as good as dedicated gps hardware...as there is a bit of lag...so it does not make it ideal for turn by turn...but for general location tracking it is great.

    What mine is doing is most definitely NOT normal.
     
  4. CADer macrumors 6502

    CADer

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2007
    #4
    haven't experienced this but a friend on his 3G has had his iPhone GPS going bonkers - maybe a bug in 3.0?
     
  5. Mad Mac Maniac macrumors 601

    Mad Mac Maniac

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2007
    Location:
    A little bit of here and a little bit of there.
    #5
    I hope you are joking. This is one of my most hated comments. It's right up there with the "one speaker not working"

    If you haven't figured out that a-gps is better than gps by now, just give away your iphone. and if it's a 3gs give it to me :)
     
  6. 1rottenapple macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2004
    #6
    pardon my ignorance on the topic. Sometime my google maps app is saying im in one location on the map when I am on the freeway.
     
  7. jersey macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2007
    #7
    Mine was acting odd when I first got it. Go into settings, general, and reset the network settings. After that mine cleared up.
     
  8. thor79 thread starter macrumors 6502

    thor79

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2008
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    #8
    Thanks, giving that a try first.

    edit: First initial test, sitting here in my room (all I can do now) looks promising...it pinpoints to the same spot as my 3G with the same level of confidence (pretty high, but not the highest).
     
  9. HecubusPro macrumors 6502a

    HecubusPro

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2006
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #9
    I'm having the exact same problem with my 3GS. I've restored mine three times, one time not installing any apps or music or videos, and almost every time I have GPS issues described above. Some times it works right, but not often.

    I'm taking my phone in on Tuesday to simply try and get a replacement. I'm sure they'll want to do a restore and such, but I'm pretty sure they won't be able to do anything there I haven't already tried.
     
  10. thor79 thread starter macrumors 6502

    thor79

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2008
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    #10
    Did an extended test...driving to the Apple store (had a couple things to pick up)...testing both my 3G and 3GS under the same circumstances. 3G did just fine. 3GS was unresponsive most of the time...doing the skip every 30 seconds thing. There was a time when it tracked correctly for a bit...but it lasted a couple of minutes...and ended just as I was going around a turn on the tollway...if I were actually doing what google maps said I did...I would have driven straight off the side of the tollway and into a neighborhood about a half mile.

    Got an appointment for the Genius Bar on Monday.
     
  11. thor79 thread starter macrumors 6502

    thor79

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2008
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    #11
    They swapped my 3GS for a new one and the issue no longer happens. The GPS works just like my 3G did now.
     
  12. cdesigns macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2008
    #12
    My 3GS GPS also doesnt work right, WHEN in ONLY WHEN I get a position fix, it only last a few seconds and then it goes back to an older location and the blue circle shows and then nothing happends.

    I think is a bug on 3.0 because when I had the 3G with 2.2.1 it worked perfectly with all my GPS programs, but when I updated to 3.0 it gave me wrong or no position most of the time. Now I upgraded to the 3GS and it worse than the 3G with 3.0.

    I'm hopping that they fix this issue because it really sucks, I use the GPS a lot.
     
  13. klane macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2009
    Location:
    New York, NY
    #13
    I've had the same sort of results, but I had just attributed it to living in Manhattan. Of course, for me, building interference may still be the problem as I have sporadic results with not just GPS, but 3G and standard cell coverage here as well.

    Does anyone in NYC experience solid 3GS GPS tracking?
     
  14. baypharm macrumors 65816

    baypharm

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2007
    #14
    My experience in Florida is not a good one. Going down the highway it shows me about a half mile away in a field.
     
  15. philitup23 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2009
    #15
    Thank you! This helped me....for now.

    Never mind. It's back to not working well
     
  16. Gin Gin macrumors regular

    Gin Gin

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2009
    #16
    I'm on my 2nd 3G S (1st one went for a swim) and both have behaved like this. I was showing it to DH the other day in the car and he said it's acting like it's not using the GPS but just pinging the towers. I can't compare to a 3G because this is my first iPhone. I have a 2 year old Garmin and I've been thinking I would never replace it with one of the iPhone nav apps. I'm going to try the reset network settings now.
     

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