Software for Q's Assisted GPS

Discussion in 'Windows Phone Software' started by tj!2k6, Aug 14, 2006.

  1. tj!2k6

    tj!2k6 New Member

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    Software for Q's Assisted GPS

    I was just wondering if anyone knows of any software that can interface/take advantage of the Q's internal AGPS.. any location based services type stuff?

    Does such software even exist for any WM5 phones? I imagine so.. Trying to research this but not coming up with much so far.
  2. bpatt

    bpatt New Member

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    Agreed - that would be really cool.
  3. tj!2k6

    tj!2k6 New Member

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    There's a piece of software called Navizon (http://www.navizon.com) that could be promising.

    I downloaded it, created an account, and tried the "Premium" demo. While I understand that triangulation based on cell signal strengths can never be precise as true GPS, based on my preliminary testing I have to say I'm a bit disappointed:

    In my apartment, it "located" me about 1 mile South of my physical location.. "not all that bad" I thought, "let me take this for a spin." So I drove to 7-11 to get something to drink and see how well Navizon worked from there... this time it determined I was ~25 miles South of my actual physical location!! I forgot to check my signal strength when I was at the 7-11, but I don't recall ever having poor service over there.

    Perhaps some other folks want to give it a try and relate their experiences here.
  4. VTDr0p0ut

    VTDr0p0ut New Member

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    Based on their website, it seems the Navizon service is a very low-tech attempt @ cognitive radio (and probably a poor idea). Rather than doing "normal" positioning with cell towers (AoA, multi-tower triangulation, etc which is accurate to ~ 10 m in LOS applications), they base it off signal-strength/strongest tower maps provided by GPS. Which means when you are connected to a tower (which can have coverage ranges of 0-15 miles radius = 0-30 miles diameter), your location is determned by your signal strength - and you don't have to be an Electrical Engineer to figure out why that's a bad idea - granded you dont' have concentric rings of signal due to topographical differences, but you certainly have MANY instances of a single signal strength value ... not to mention the RF quality of phones vary wildly, so three different phones at the same exact location, same time, same weather, etc. will receive 3 different signal strengths... heck... two Moto Q's will receive two different signals @ the same exact spot (though I'm sure they'd be closer to each other than, say, a Q and an LG VX10).

    The worst part about it is that this technology would probably work fairly accurately in rural areas of the midwest (flat, no tall buildings to bounce signals around), but they market it for metropolitan areas (increased people to perform mappings, but the significant multi-path from buildings makes even AoA/signal strength distance measurements inaccurate)...

    Enough ranting....
  5. bpatt

    bpatt New Member

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    Add me to the sucker list - looking forward to my "update" install where I can wipe this off.
  6. Rhstevenson

    Rhstevenson New Member

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    Well i downloaded it too and couldnt' get it to work at all. I got stuck in an infinite Bluetooth connection loop for some reason. I'm going to uninstall it now.
  7. Buzz1317

    Buzz1317 New Member

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    VZ Navigator for the Q

    I was reading Engadget today and saw a ad for the Q. When I clicked on it I was directed to this page http://estore.vzwshop.com/so/motoqbiz/ Much to my suprise down at the bottom right of this page there is a VZ Navigator box that says try it free for 2 Weeks and shows the Q with a map on it.

    I called Verizon and got the much noted sorry sir that phone does not have Get it Now so it cannot have VZ Navigator. I went around the horn a few times and got to a supervisor that said she would call me back.

    When she did she told me that there is going to be an update that will allow the Q to use the VZ Navigator program. She said they (Software Update Dept?) had no time line when it would be ready but she would keep me up to speed when she knows.

    I guess they are planning it or why else would they make a webpage like this and advertise it on Engadget if it was not going to happen.

    Cingular shows the same setup for that BlackJack thing of theirs also.

    Let me know if anyone else knows anything on this.
    Thanks
  8. all_good_in_the_hood

    all_good_in_the_hood New Member

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    Why not just software based?

    Dont all phones issued within the past 4 years come with a built in GPS device?

    Is there not software available for Windows Mobile that can access that GPS locator?

    I currently have the VX8600 and decided to upgrade to a big screen...

    Maybe I just need a phone that has Windows XP on it... When is the comming out?
  9. winklebleck

    winklebleck New Member

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  10. rmcdonough

    rmcdonough New Member

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    I installed the new vesion of Navizon and it works great as a virtual GPS to the Windows Live Beta. The Navizon application itself is pretty cool, but it tends to crash a lot. The virtual GPS Driver seems rock solid however. One the downside, it's not very accurate. I work in downtown Boston and you'll find that it say's your one part of the city one second, and another part the next. But it does get you in the general vicinity. The installation process is a total hack though.

    Ryan-
  11. tilley

    tilley New Member

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  12. Pony99CA

    Pony99CA Active Member

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    Better?

    Better than what? CoPilot Live doesn't use the Q's AGPS; it requires a real GPS receiver.

    Steve
  13. tilley

    tilley New Member

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    - better than Navizon? CoPilot Live for Q needs the real gps receiver? If you have a real receiver, why do you need CoPilot working on Q? The Q becomes the real receiver with the CoPilot installed on it, no? Sure I missed something to understand these stuffs. I'm realy new quser. I'm confused. Could you clarify for me, thanks.
  14. Pony99CA

    Pony99CA Active Member

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    GPS Basics

    If you visit that link you posted, you'll notice one bundle they sell includes a GPS receiver. Why would they do that if only the software were needed?

    Here are the basics of PDA-based GPS navigation. You need three things:
    1. A PDA (obviously)
    2. A GPS receiver to receive the satellite signals and process them. This receiver should be capable of putting out an NMEA stream (the most commonly used standard for GPS data).
    3. Navigation software that plans routes for you, maps your current position based on the GPS information, etc. True navigation software (as opposed to mapping or routing software) has to provide you with upcoming turn information (preferably using speech so you don't always have to look at the unit while driving) and automatic rerouting if you get off course.
    There are some PDAs that include built-in GPS receivers and navigation software, but the Q isn't one of those. The Q's aGPS only receives some of the information, but it relies on connections to the carrier for the rest, and it does not output an NMEA stream.

    CoPilot Live works with any receiver that outputs an NMEA stream, so it won't work with the Q's aGPS. You'll still need a Bluetooth GPS receiver, either the one ALK sells in the bundle or another one.

    I hope that clarifies the situation.

    Steve
  15. Verges

    Verges New Member

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    Pony, I think that's a bit of a red herring. Comments are true for PDA's, but not entirely for Smartphones like the Q. The Q meets requirement number 1. It meets requirement number 2a - it has an aGPS reciever to recieve sat signals. It meets req 2b not by processing the sat info itself, but by off loading it a central server on the network (thus the "assisted" part). As you pointed out the stream SHOULD be NMEA - but there are no requirements for it to be so unless you want a choice in software etc. (Open arch and standards are a good thing - but they are not a requirement for it to function.) Requirement number 3 is what we are all asking for. When will Verizon (or a third party) make a download available for the Q like they have for the GIN aGPS phones. (i.e. RAZR)
  16. Pony99CA

    Pony99CA Active Member

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    Red Herring?

    I understand what you want, but Tilley was asking about CoPilot, which doesn't work like that. For now, PDA-based navigation still seems to require what I described. Yes, something like Navizon may work, but I haven't heard many good things about it.

    Regarding NMEA, it's true that software can support other formats (like SiRF), but how many actually do? Considering that most GPS receivers that I'm familiar with at least have the option to output NMEA, there's not much incentive for a GPS software vendor to support other formats.

    But what do I know? I've only been using the Pocket PC version of CoPilot since Version 2 in late 2001 and I've only worked at a GPS Pocket PC vendor for a year. :wink:

    As for somebody making a GetItNow client for the Q, I don't see that it would be impossible. Somebody would have to write a BREW library for Windows Mobile and then port the GetItNow client (and navigation program) to that (which hopefully would be easy once the BREW part was done).

    However, I wouldn't hold my breath. GetItNow has been available for a few years now, as have Windows Mobile phones, and there still isn't a GetItNow client available that I've heard of.

    Steve
  17. VTDr0p0ut

    VTDr0p0ut New Member

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    On the other hand, the Q is really the first phone that made smartphones affordable, popular, and sexy (The Treo 650/700w was a good first attempt, but overpriced when it first came out). With the sudden influx of teens and tweens coming over to the WM5 platform, there's a lot of pressure (pure consumer request as well as possible financial gain) to port BREW to WM5.

    And in my opinion, I don't think it's an issue of how to make it work, I think it's an issue of how to not make it easy for someone with full access to their phone (like the Q) to hack it and get the apps for free... if their ROI's going to suck, I doubt they're going to go for it.
  18. Pony99CA

    Pony99CA Active Member

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    Popular Smartphones

    Perhaps, but the Treo 650/700w certainly weren't the first smart phones available. Toshiba/Audiovox had a Pocket PC phone out before the Pocket PC Phone OS was introduced, for example, and Kyocera had a Palm OS phone out many years ago.

    I think there will be some pressure, but how much? And we'll have to see how many teens and tweens actually get PDA phones.

    Plus, I'm not sure how many will actually use GetItNow. My 15-year-old daughter has had two GetItNow phones (my old LG VX6000 and my old Motorola V710) and doesn't use it at all that I know of. (I haven't seen anything on my bill, at least; maybe she knows better. :laugh2:)

    There's that, too. I assume BREW can't be too difficult to implement if it's put on "dumb phones", so it shouldn't be hard to put on WM 5.

    The other problem with the investment is that it's so easy to get WM 5 programs, ring tones, wallpappers, etc. from other sources that it may not make it worthwhile even if the security model is tight.

    Steve
  19. inf3st

    inf3st New Member

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    LOL it doesn't show the map now.
  20. VTDr0p0ut

    VTDr0p0ut New Member

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    I didn't mean to imply the Treo's were the first, but as far as I had seen/heard, the Treo's were some of the first SmartPhones "non-business-types" picked up en-mass.

    Agreed, but unless the average education/grammer of adults is drastically lower than I have been accustomed to, I would say the average age of the Q-users on this forum is much lower than the Blackberry users on other forums. I'm not saying the Q is going to out-sell the chocolate.... but I'll bet anything it (and the blackjack) are making a much deeper plunge into the tween market than any other previous smartphone offerings.


    Good job for putting the fear into her :) I'm not sure if VCast/GetItNow will be too popular on the Q with all of the other options available (as far as ringers/pictures/games are concerned), but with the addition of VerizonTV on it's way and the VZNavigator that EVERYBODY seems to want on the Q, they'd be stupid not to make those two options available on their current flagship-SmartPhone. Tacking on an extra $10-$40 to thousands of bills / month has to make business sense to just about anybody.

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