Assistnow GPS Services Boost-Up GPS Receiver Performance – u-blox

Posted in Uncategorized
On Sunday, June 10, 2007

u-blox AG announced the free provision of AssistNow A-GPS services, that able to boost performance of a GPS receiver and display a position almost instantly, even in difficult signal environments. A-GPS especially useful to GPS-receiving-enabled applications that require always-on operability such as GPS-enabled handheld devices or fleet management applications, whose users need to access location-based services instantly.

Karsten Tietz, VP Sales EMEA:

We are delighted to offer our customers AssistNow Offline and AssistNow Online services free of charge

AssistNow, in combination with our unrivalled GPS receivers, brings users instant GPS acquisition and unmatched GPS Receiver performance in even the harshest signal environments. u-blox’ latest location solutions set new performance standards for the GPS Receiver industry at large…

AssistNow Online to Boost-up GPS Receiver Performance

AssistNow Online to Boost-up GPS Receiver Performance

How Assisted GPS (A-GPS)  boost GPS Receiver performance?
A GPS receiver normally (without A-GPS) needs to locate at least four satellites in direct line-of-sight and then download their location data. It is at least takes 30 seconds to receive the satellite position data (‘Ephemeris’) and other satellite information it requires in order to compute a position. This process can take much longer in adverse conditions such as those found in urban environments or indoor locations where GPS signals are weaker. For users who cannot afford to wait, or simply wish to benefit from instant positioning at their fingertips, Assisted GPS (A-GPS) is the solution. The service works by instantly providing the GPS receiver with the data it needs to compute a position, thus shortening Time To First Fix (TTFF).

u-blox offers two options to operate A-GPS services:

  • AssistNow Offline
    AssistNow Offline is u-blox’ A-GPS data provisioning service that does not require an application to have mobile connectivity at start-up. Under AssistNow Offline, u-blox’ assistance server provides the GPS receiver with AlmanacPlus® differential almanac correction data that is valid for up to 14 days. The data can be updated via a simple Internet download at the user’s convenience any time within the time period that the data is valid for. This enables the receiver to benefit from fast TTFF and accurate navigation for extended time periods, anywhere in the world.
    AssistNow Offline service provides assistance data that is valid for up to 14 days. Users can therefore enjoy boosted satellite acquisition performance for extended time periods and only need to connect to the Internet occasionally to update the assistance data.
  • AssistNow Online
    AssistNow Online is u-blox’ A-GPS data provisioning service for conventional MS-based applications. Using standard user-plane communication links and protocols like GPRS, AssistNow Online works on all mobile networks. At start-up, the GPS receiver requests Ephemeris and Almanac satellite position data, as well as accurate time and other satellite information over a mobile network. This data, transfered from an assistance server at system start-up, boosts the receiver’s TTFF, enabling it to compute a position within seconds. The assistance data file is 3 KB or smaller and is transmitted over wireless networks to mobile end-products like mobile phones, PDAs and any other handheld Personal Navigation Devices (PND) with mobile connectivity. AssistNow Online downloads new assistance data packets at every device start-up. These much smaller data packets are downloaded straight to the GPS receiver, making AssistNow Online ideal for applications without Flash memories such as mobile phones.
  AssistNow Online AssistNow Offline
Supported products ANTARIS, ANTARIS 4 and u-blox 5 ANTARIS 4 with Flash EPROM,
u-blox 5
Aiding data exchanged Ephemeris
Almanac
Coarse position
Time
Satellite health / status
Almanac
AlmanacPlus® differential almanac correction data
Time period covered Max. 4 hours Max. 14 days
Data access to server At every startup Occasional updates at user’s convenience
Size of aiding data ca 1 – 3 KB ca 10 KB (1 day) … 90 KB (14 days)
TTFF Performance ANTARIS 4: 18 – 24 s
ANTARIS 4 with sync signal: 4 – 12 s
u-blox 5: < 1 – 10 s
ANTARIS 4: 2 – 30 s
u-blox 5: < 1 – 10 s

AssistNow Online – Boost-up GPS Receiver Performance

The AssistNow Online system works by accessing assistance data such as Ephemeris, Almanac and accurate time from our Global Reference Network of globally placed GPS receivers. With A-GPS, the receiver can acquire satellites and provide accurate position data instantly on demand, even under poor signal conditions.

Applications:

  • Smartphones, PDAs
  • Mobile phones
  • Asset tracking devices
  • Personal and vehicle security solutions
  • Fleet management and dispatch systems
  • Personal navigation devicese with instant positioning

Benefits:

  • Short Time-To-First-Fix (TTFF)
  • Always-On Service
  • Works on all u-blox GPS receivers
  • Robust service, even under poor signal conditions
  • Cost-efficient, easy to install and operate
  • Open standard User-plane communication using like TCP/IP
  • Network operator independent

AssistNow Offline – Boost-up GPS Receiver Performance

AssistNow Offline is an A-GPS service that provides instant positioning without the need for connectivity at startup and waiting for assistance data to arrive. u-blox provides AlmanacPlus® differential almanac correction data which brings Time To First Fix (TTFF) down to seconds and provides high positioning accuracy. The AlmanacPlus data downloaded into the GPS receiver is valid for up to 14 days. Users can update the AlmanacPlus data at their own convenience within the time period that the data is valid for.

AssistNow Offline to Boost-up GPS Receiver Performance

AssistNow Offline to Boost-up GPS Receiver Performance

 

Applications:

  • Personal mobility
  • Mobile phones, smartphones, PDAs
  • OEM and aftermarket vehicle navigation devices
  • Fleet management and dispatch systems
  • Professional products
  • Personal and vehicle security solutions
  • Personal navigation devices with instant positioning

Benefits:

  • Short Time-To-First-Fix (TTFF)
  • AlmanacPlus data valid for up to 14 days
  • No connectivity needed at start-up
  • Global coverage
  • No external CPU assistance needed at start-up
  • Robust service, even under poor signal conditions
  • Cost-efficient, easy to install and operate

Further reading:  u-blox’s AssistNow A-GPS Services to Boost-Up GPS Receiver Performance


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