GPS thread [split from Review sticky]

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by gkarris, Jul 10, 2008.

  1. gkarris macrumors 604

    gkarris

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2004
    Location:
    "No escape from Reality..."
    #1
    So is it a real GPS or is it really "Cellular Assisted" where it also tracks based on cell sites?

    Can you use it as a GPS for hiking?
     
  2. Waterpolo820 macrumors regular

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    Jul 5, 2008
    #2
    reading from the Apple web site, it is assisted GPS.
     
  3. dmelgar macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2005
    #3
    WRONG!
    Its real GPS that will also use cell towers if it can't get a satellite signal.
     
  4. PCMacUser macrumors 68000

    PCMacUser

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2005
    #4
    From the sounds of it, it gets its maps 'live' from Google - rather than downloading a set of maps for your area to the phone's memory (like the Nokia N95 does).

    So I'm assuming that no, you couldn't use it for hiking unless you were in constant range of cellular towers.

    You'd better email Apple immediately to correct them, because they seem to think it's Assisted GPS too!
     

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  5. herbiehancock00 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2007
    #5
    It's been confirmed countless time already. Assisted GPS is exactly what dmelgar said - "real GPS that will also use cell towers if it can't get a satellite signal."
     
  6. PCMacUser macrumors 68000

    PCMacUser

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    Jan 13, 2005
    #6
    I'm not disagreeing with dmelgar's understanding of how it works. Simply pointing out that it is called Assisted GPS. :)
     
  7. DavidLeblond macrumors 68020

    DavidLeblond

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    Jan 6, 2004
    Location:
    Raleigh, NC
    #7
    Sorry to nitpick, but GPS is satellite. I think you meant it uses GPS and cell towers.
     
  8. junglykutha macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2008
    Location:
    London
    #8
    Assisted GPS (A-GPS) is an enhanced version of GPS. A-GPS retrieves assistance data over a data connection (like GPRS or 3G), which helps your device calculate the coordinates of your current location when receiving signals from satellites.

    A-GPS is designed to get a fix on satellites faster and more reliably, meaning you get a smoother GPS experience. It reduces the time a GPS enabled device requires to find its current position, known as Time To First Fix (TTFF), for most geographical locations worldwide.

    A-GPS is most useful in urban areas, where you could be navigating through "urban canyons", or in a moving car.

    A-GPS improves user experience for all applications on your device which use integrated GPS.
     
  9. Waterpolo820 macrumors regular

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    Jul 5, 2008
    #9
    Actually RIGHT!!
     
  10. braisim macrumors newbie

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    Jul 5, 2007
    #10
    Maybe I'm missing something, but is GPS really worth it if it's not turn-by-turn?

    Other than getting a more precuise fix in Google Maps and being able to tag your photos with your current location (big deal!) I don't understand why Apple though that this feature was more important than a better camera.

    I'll be keeping my iPhone V1 for a while yet.
     
  11. paulej69 macrumors member

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    May 5, 2008
    #11
    NOT wrong !!! GPS ASSISTED by Cell towers - aGPS = REAL GPS = BETTER than regular GPS.
     
  12. Gee4orce macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2004
    #12
    The Assisted GPS also uses 'Skyhook', which is a database of known Wifi hotspot locations - the cell tower information isnt' that accurate, but the Wifi location info can be almost as good as true GPS if you're in an area that's been mapped by SkyHook. (oh - you can add your own Wifi SSID to their database too, so you're home location is always super-accurate).

    This is how the iPod Touch is able to use location awareness functions, because it obviously lacks any cell network antenna at all, and has to rely on the Wifi hotspots entirely.
     
  13. Blue Velvet Moderator emeritus

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2004
    #13
    I've split this conversation from the Review sticky thread as some were complaining that it was derailing the reviews. Hope that's OK.
     
  14. 2002cbr600f4i macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2008
    #14
    I just love seeing people like you who say GPS and have the narrow view of it being just turn by turn car route navigation... GPS ONLY provides position information. Where you are in relation to 4+ sats, by doing triangulation of the signals coming from the sats. There's NOTHING map based or turn based about GPS, A-GPS, etc.

    All that turn-by-turn stuff is just routing software written to take position data from the GPS receiver in the device and plot the position on geo-recified maps. Many handheld GPS devices might have road maps on them, but don't do any of the route determination or even "rubberband" your position to the roads.

    GPS is useful for a LOT of things other than turn by turn routing software....
     
  15. TransientWolf macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2007
    #15
    I think the problem is the google maps not being stored on the device. When TomTom or similar bring out an app for turn by turn navigation you can bet it includes there own maps loaded on the iphone which will then use the gps signal from the hardware. I am certain that will provided turn by turn. Google maps wasn't really meant to be for turn by turn driving navigation.

    Indeed I just tried mine on the train I am travelling on which has wi-fi and it is happily tracking me at 125mph on the map down the trainline very smoothly. I assume because it can get the maps quickly enough over the wifi connection.
     
  16. Fibbons macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2008
    #16
    Please can somebody confirm this for me - can you get directions from your current location to a place (like on the current iPhone) then have the GPS track you along the line? This would be really useful and personally I wouldn't need turn by turn directions if it has this feature.

    Thankyou
     
  17. Gix1k macrumors 68030

    Gix1k

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2008
    #17
    What is the point of GPS if it is not turn by turn? What exactly does "assisted" mean? Tell me what the GPS does for you on the 3g? Curious
     
  18. mainstreetmark macrumors 68020

    mainstreetmark

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    Location:
    Saint Augustine, FL
    #18
    Allow me to retort:

    First, A lot of people seem to think there's some sort of value in having a terribly synthesized computer tell them to "turn ... left... here...". That's a navigator, which uses GPS to figure out where it is. GPS tells you where you are, and you get to experience the fun of living as an autonomous human. You might even find something beyond Applebees if you explore on your own.

    Second, "Assisted" means it also uses celltowers and wifi. Some of the issues with GPS are that satellite signals can bounce off skyscrapers and confuse your GPS, but since there's lots of cell towers in the same spot where there's lots of buildings, you get MORE accurate results in metro areas, in theory.

    Third, it tells you where you are.

    (Oddly, my Original iPhone running iPhone 2.0 has greatly improved location accuracy for some reason. Down to <100feet versus nearly a mile.)
     
  19. bobbba macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2008
    #19
    Just travelled 30 miles with it.it worked perfectly. Tracking was good, maps downloaded as I went along. The gps pickup is as good as tomtom if not better. I think full satnav will be easy to implement on it.

    Altho google maps is not turn based, it is still pretty useful imop.
     
  20. Gix1k macrumors 68030

    Gix1k

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2008
    #20
    Let me first say I am not knocking....I am curious because I am considering the device.

    With that, I realize the diff between GPS and navigator....Car has it. Also, my 30 testing Samsung Instinct has it. I dont realize why i'd care where I am, if it can't tell me how to get to where I need to be.....meaning if I am lost. A simple GPS...if I am lost simply gives me exact details of just how lost I am. My Instinct will guide me home or wherever.

    BTW, this is no means a comparison....I am just looking for a reason to return this Instinct and get a 3G.
     
  21. mainstreetmark macrumors 68020

    mainstreetmark

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    May 7, 2003
    Location:
    Saint Augustine, FL
    #21
    Keep in mind, that for all we know, Garmin or TomTom will have an iPhone app out at some point. Sure, they're a hardware company, too, but the iPhone is capable, and anyone in the world can develop on it now, so ... wait for it.
     
  22. bobbba macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2008
    #22
    It actually works with google maps as a partial sat nav:

    use the gps to find where you are
    ask for directions to your destination
    it draws a map to your destination
    get it to follow you as you drive
    watch your progress on the map against the route

    if you get lost, just repeat it

    admittedly it's not perfect and you may need a passenger to help if your route is complicated. even with the limitations it's not bad until a true satnav app is available
     
  23. altaskier macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2008
    #23
    I'm curious - will it display your current coordinates (latitude and longitude)? Will it do so even if you don't have cell phone or WiFi service?
     
  24. jeffreyfort macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2006
    Location:
    Findlay, Ohio
    #24
    bobbba said;

    use the gps to find where you are
    ask for directions to your destination
    it draws a map to your destination
    get it to follow you as you drive
    watch your progress on the map against the route


    That's the problem with anything other than a vocal, turn-by-turn, navigator. I can't be watching a map and traffic at the same time.

    Need voice dialing for the same reason.

    Hurry-up, TomTom, so I can buy this phone and ditch my Treo (which has both features along with cut and paste)
     
  25. t0mat0 macrumors 603

    t0mat0

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2006
    Location:
    Home
    #25
    Just to clarify come info from Pogue:
    He made it clear his infor came regarding weak GPS from the iPhone product
    manager, Bob Borchers.

    He tried the GPS feature in NY, in CT, and on the highways. He apparently never did get it to work right. (Mossberg didn't even try using it in a car).

    "The new iPhone has true G.P.S. now, too, in addition to the fake G.P.S. of its predecessor ‹ an ingenious system that shows your location on a
    map by analyzing nearby cellphone towers and Wi-Fi hot spots.


    Unfortunately, there¹s not much you can do with the G.P.S. According to
    Apple, the iPhone¹s G.P.S. antenna is much too small to emulate the turn-by-turn navigation of a G.P.S. unit for a vehicle, for example.


    Instead, all it can do at this point is track your position as you drive along, representing you as a blue dot sliding along the roads of the map. Even then, the metal of a car or the buildings of Manhattan are often enough to block the iPhone¹s view of the sky, leaving it just as confused as you are."
    v3 iPhone anyone? ;)
     

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