What is A-GPS ?


Now you might have seen this term A-GPS in a lot of specification sheets of mobile phones. So let us get to the meaning of this term. Its simple for a reader to see that there is a GPS word involved in the term. So it must be something related to GPS(Global Positioning System).

TomTom Start 20 34

What is A-GPS

So we also know that it also seems to be an advanced version of the GPS. In reality it is known as the Assisted GPS. Why is an assisted GPS needed in the phone? Well it is used for speeding up the start up time of the GPS enabled devices. There might be cases where the GPS signal is weak. In such cases the device takes support of the A-GPS. It helps in assisting the GPS getting a lock.

It does require an assistance server for this purpose. So for fulfilling this need it needs data connection. So using the data connection connectivity it helps the GPS to show accurate results and solve the problems when the signals are weak. Though for using the data if using a 2G or a 3G connectivity data charges may get applied through the telecom operator.

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Working of GPS

There are GPS satellites which revolve around the earth twice a day in a particular orbit. These satellites keep on sending information to the earth using radio waves. The messages include these 3 important information:

1. Exact time of the message transmitted from satellite

2. Information about the orbit

3. Health and rough orbits of all the satellites

Using this information, a GPS receiver calculates the time at which these messages were sent and the time they received on Earth. Here is the most important factor in the A-GPS. At the moment when the GPS receiver gets to know the position of minimum 4 satellites and the time of each one is able to lock the own location. This helps in locking the position of the GPS receiver. This method of caliberation is known as trilateration.

It might take as less as 3 seconds to as long as few minutes to get a proper signal. It depends upon the location and the quantity of interference.

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Working of A-GPS

In the case of device which is A-GPS enabled its working is smarter. In this process the A-GPS device uses the existing servers to get the information from the satellites. Now these existing servers can be mobile network tower and bases. As we know that these stations keep on continuously send and receive information with the satellites and the information provided is accurate and there is no delay in calibration of the exact time location and orbit of the satellites. These mobile network towers are having very high computing speeds.

This fixes any errors and it will help the A-GPS user to get the exact location of the device. A-GPS is faster and more precise in finding the location. The only advantage in the GPS is that it is free to use and in an A-GPS it uses resources of the mobile network to connect to the mobile network tower. This process consumes a small amount of data, which is charged by your telecom operator.

There are cases where the A-GPS model can directly connect to the satellites when they do not have any assistance server available to do the above process.

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Final Verdict

A-GPS devices are faster and more precise than the GPS devices. Though they use the data for connecting with mobile network for finding the position.

We hope you got a better understanding of the concept. If you have anything more to share about this topic, please do so in the comments below.

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Likes to review Softwares and Gadgets. In love with blogging since a long time. A very enthusiastic and dynamic person. We appreciate the comments from our visitors. If you want to review any gadget or software, contact us! 🙂

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