Siemens Brings GPS to the Cell Phone Network

Mar 03, 2005

Siemens has developed a solution that’s making it easier for mobile phone companies to offer their customers virtual guided tours and other positioning services. This is possible thanks to A-GPS (Assisted Global Positioning System), which Siemens is integrating into cell phone networks. Initial tests of the new positioning system at the Czech cell phone operator T-Mobile in Prague were successful, and Siemens Communications intends to market the system beginning this autumn. Since there currently are no handsets for this technology on the market, a Siemens SX1 cell phone equipped with an A-GPS chip was used in the test phase.

In A-GPS, the handsets — cell phones or hand-held computers — receive additional data via a special location server in the mobile phone network. For one thing, they learn the exact transmission frequency of each satellite with which they have contact. This changes, depending on whether the satellite is moving toward or away from the receiving device.

The additional information is used to accelerate the positioning computation. And the server also completely or partially takes over the position determination, which increases the sensitivity. This prolongs the life of the cell phone battery. What’s more, this means positioning is possible in enclosed spaces or narrow areas between tall buildings — which is not the case with the Global Positioning System (GPS), where a receiving device requires contact to multiple satellites and relies on a certain signal strength.

As a transmission channel, the solution from Siemens uses Internet connections, which are already used by modern cell phones for WAP communication or downloading e-mail, for example. This eliminates the need for costly modifications of the mobile phone network, since no changes are required to the existing infrastructure.

A-GPS applications include virtual guided tours of cities via cell phone, and the tour users can opt to be directed to any location in real time. The A-GPS solution is also being considered for use in the event of traffic accidents: It makes it possible to quickly communicate the positions of accident victims to rescue centers.

Explore further: Why the Sony hack isn't big news in Japan

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Recommended for you

Why the Sony hack isn't big news in Japan

14 hours ago

Japan's biggest newspaper, Yomiuri Shimbun, featured a story about Sony Corp. on its website Friday. It wasn't about hacking. It was about the company's struggling tablet business.

Off-world manufacturing is a go with space printer

18 hours ago

On Friday, the BBC reported on a NASA email exchange with a space station which involved astronauts on the International Space Station using their 3-D printer to make a wrench from instructions sent up in ...

Cadillac CT6 will get streaming video mirror

19 hours ago

Cadillac said Thursday it will add high resolution streaming video to the function of a rearview mirror, so that the driver's vision and safety can be enhanced. The technology will debut on the 2016 Cadillac ...

Sony faces 4th ex-employee lawsuit over hack

19 hours ago

A former director of technology for Sony Pictures Entertainment has sued the company over the data breach that resulted in the online posting of his private financial and personal information.

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.