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1730 posts

Uber Geek

#90253 17-Sep-2011 13:00
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Hi, I have had a no. of Nokia phones without using A-GPS they all seem slower than my Navman.  Is this correct?  I have read that some poeple say Android are pretty quick or even faster than the car GPS.  Or is this just a thing with Nokia?

Outside it needs a few minutes to get a fix on a location.
In a moving vehicle it just won't work.
The Navman - just works.  You start the car first and then you turn on the GPS. 

When I just got the phone, it worked v quick, I was surprised, I was in a moving vehicle.  But I found out the default settings had A-GPS on. 

FWIW, I also have a Garmin 60CSx which has the Sirf chip, maybe b/c it is more for outdoor hiking and stuff ... in a car I found it also worked slower than my Navman. 


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Uber Geek

  #522346 17-Sep-2011 15:08
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Why did you turn A-GPS off?

Also make sure your phone is in the same place as your navman, a car is pretyt effective at blocking GPS signals if it's not in the front windscreen.


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Uber Geek

  #522536 18-Sep-2011 08:09
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I didn't want to be charged for A-GPS.  The main use of a cellphone GPS for me is overseas travel so that means expensive rates.....

I was on back passenger seat and held the cellphone next to the glass window, for 10mins it just won't get a position at all.....  When we got to the Bunnings carpark I stood outside for a minute (not moving) and it stil won't either.

Edit.  When we got home.  I left it at the backyard for a few minutes and it got it .......
So comparing fairly - without data assistance - Navman vs Nokia.  To me it appears Navman is better is that basically they have a much better receptor?  Althou I have read that some say Android are faster than TomToms, also without using A-GPS....... Can someone confirm that?

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  #522538 18-Sep-2011 08:21
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The nokia's may be pretty bad at it, when I had an E71, it took a while to get GPS fix, but it did get it after a minute or so. My iphone gets it really fast.

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Ultimate Geek

  #522652 18-Sep-2011 14:20
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I have used standalone GPS's in the marine industry for over 15 years and more recently those in phones. A phone GPS, all else being equal (so, for example, the phone not using AGPS), will never get a fix as fast as a dedicated GPS device simply because of the difference in antenna sizes. A phone's GPS antenna is very small and generally tucked away in a corner of the phone amongst a pile of other unrelated electronic gubbins.

The Nokia phones I have used, being an E52 and an N8, have both been fine  getting a fix quickly without AGPS assistance. Both if turned on when I go to back out of our around 50m long drive will have a fix by the time I get to the road. If in a new distant location and have been turned off enroute they take a bit longer. Both work fine anywhere in our 2 story home but take slightly longer to get a non AGPS assisted fix than they would in the clear.

With the N8 I did some experiments with it in a rf tight enclosure  (AKA a microwave oven Smile) and found that once it had a fix it needed very little signal residual strength to maintain it when screened (in scientific talk Wink that means the oven door was only just ajar). Both phones never drop the fix even if they are in the open bin in the car's centre console between the front seats (although I usually use a dashboard mount).

That said some users seem to have great difficulty getting fixes with the same phone models which I suspect is a mix of finger trouble and maybe issues on their specific phone.

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  #522785 18-Sep-2011 22:39
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trig42: The nokia's may be pretty bad at it, when I had an E71, it took a while to get GPS fix, but it did get it after a minute or so. My iphone gets it really fast.

I would suspect your iPhone is using A-GPS.  I know iPhones cannot get a GPS fix or are very very slow getting fixes when in offline or airplane mode, whereas a Nokia will get a fix in offline mode.

MY Nokia 5800 is very fast getting a fix but I use A-GPS most of the time. I think GPS performance varies between various models, I use Sportstracker and the tracks recorded on my phone seems much more accurate than on some other phones.  I suspect it is as John mentions, regarding aerial size and location within the handset.

Re the data charges for roaming.  I have my phone set up to always ask when going online to use 3G data, allowing me to veto any online charges I don't wish to incurr. plus if I were to use it overseas I would turn A-GPS off. 

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