Tag Archives: GPS

AT&T’s Samsung Captivate Software Update Does Not Fix GPS Issue

Samsung and AT&T have just announced that they will be releasing a software update for the Samsung Captivate. Earlier today, Verizon had also announced a software update for the Samsung Vibrant. AT&T CaptivateBoth the Samsung Vibrant and the Captivate belong to the Galaxy S series of handset from Samsung.

This software update from AT&T is aimed at improving the performance of the device and will also include QuickOffice. The OTA update is 12MB in size.

However, many of the popular tech blogs including Engadget are reporting that this update (JH7) is also aimed at improving the GPS performance of the device.

An update to improve the Samsung Captivate’s GPS performance is now available. Captivate customers will receive a notification on their device that an update is available and will simply need to download the file to update their phone. The updates will be pushed to customers’ devices over the next few weeks.

The update for the Captivate will also improve additional device functions, such as media scanning time, add the full version of Quickoffice and address Microsoft Exchange 2003 policy support.

Surprisingly, I am unable to find the link to the above press release in AT&T’s website. Even Captivate owners on XDA forums are reporting that this update did not fix the GPS issue for them.

AT&T only mentions about this software update at the bottom of this page and it does not mention anything about the GPS performance fix. It looks like someone has spread a rumor about the GPS fix here or maybe someone from Samsung’s PR sent wrong information to these blogs? It might be also possible that AT&T forgot to mention about the GPS fix in their change-log.

Samsung To Fix Galaxy S GPS Issues in September

The Samsung Galaxy S is easily one of the best Android phones to date and has record sales across the globe. There are many variants of the Samsung Galaxy S, namely the AT&T Captivate and the T-Mobile Vibrant. Even the upcoming Sprint Epic 4G is based on the Galaxy S.

However, most of the Galaxy S phones have been having GPS issues. The problems range from not being able to get a lock on any satellites, bad GPS reception and GPS not functioning properly when using apps like Google Maps.

Many users have been complaining about it but there hasn’t been any response from Samsung’s end. Today, however, Samsung let out a tweet which said that

“We’re testing software to optimize GPS on US Galaxy S. Expected updates avail. in Sept. Details & download to follow.”

Galaxy S GPS Issues

Even Carla Saavedra, Samsung Web Product Analyst tweeted the same thing.

“#Samsung is testing software to optimize #GPS on Galaxy S phones. Look for updates in September. Details & download instructions to follow.”

It’s a bit late, but it’s good to know that Samsung is working on it. How has your experience been with GPS on the Galaxy S? Leave a comment to let us know.

SleepBlaster Wakes You Up When You Have Reached Your Destination [iPhone]

For all those times when you cannot sleep on a train/bus just because you don’t want to miss your stop, SleepBlaster will be your savior. This iPhone app has a smart alarm system that works with the GPS and wakes you up when you have reached your destination. To avoid any GPS inaccuracies, SleepBlaster lets you choose a small area instead of a specific point.

Moreover, SleepBlaster also lets you snooze your alarm by just yelling at it. So, no more reaching out across the room to turn off your alarm clock. In addition to the iPhone app, SleepBlaster also works on your Mac and has a lot of soothing voices to put you to sleep. You can set SleepBlaster to wake up on your favorite iTunes playlist and also snooze the alarm by pressing any key.

If you are one of those sleepers who need a big bang to wake them up, fear not since SleepBlaster has a dynamite mode that will wake you up with the sound of an explosion, literally. The iPhone app is not free but given the usefulness of it, it is totally worth spending 2 bucks on it.

Download SleepBlaster from iTunes.

[Via DownloadSquad]

New GPS Satellites to Help Mobile Apps Locate More Accurately

Location based apps are all over Android and iPhone. From Google Maps to geo-tagging of photographs to location aware search, all of it gives wonderful results with GPS.

Though, one thing that has not caught up with this is the speed of GPS satellites serving data. This scenario is going to change with more satellites being launched for this sole purpose. GPS has been really slow on phones until now. Also, current GPS satellites are accurate only to a certain limit. Though, with the new satellites, the figures can get significantly less.

Boeing is manufacturing 12 new  Block IIF satellites which have twice the accuracy of current satellites. These will be stationed in the next ten years. This accuracy of GPS data can come in handy in checking population concentration, track usage of apps and in other activities like search and  rescue.

Augmented reality which barely works currently will also get more realistic with this improvement. Once again, all this comes at the cost of privacy as apps may collect various types of location based user data. The improvement of GPS is a boon though, and is a welcome move as it will open up a new dimension of mobile computing and application development.

(Source)

Free GPS on Your Laptop – Geosense for Windows

I have a GPS unit to keep me from getting lost while I’m driving, but it doesn’t hook up to my computer. If I wanted to use geolocation applications to show online friends where I was at the moment, I couldn’t do it.   Until now ….

Sathya Bhat sent me an email yesterday telling me about a new geo-location solution. Two crazy programmers named Long Zeng and Rafael Rivera have created a program that identifies where you are by using either your IP address, or Wifi triangulation. The application is called Geosense for Windows, but, it only works in Windows 7. Apparently Windows 7 has a built in location sensing API that nobody else is taking advantage of yet.

Here’s how to set it up:

First, go to the home page and download Geosense and install it.

To enable Geosense, go to your Start Menu and type location(without quotes) into the search box. Then click on Enable location and other sensors.

control-panel-location-search

Next place a check-mark in the check-box to enable Geosense.

control-panel-enable-location-sensor

Once you’ve clicked Apply, you won’t notice anything new. However, you’ll find that any location aware application you run, will now automatically know where you are.

The Geosense website offers a nice Google Maps test application to try out. You can also run the Windows Weather Gadget to find your local weather. Here you can see both of these running on my laptop.

google-maps-applet

They also mention that there’s a Twitter application called MahTweets which can grab the location and put it into your tweets.

Here’s the Geosense homepage: Check it out.

Techie Buzz Verdict:

Geosense is not going to be able to replace my car’s GPS unit, but if I’m on the road, at least I’ll know about where I am, even when I’m away from the car. I did notice that it was only able to give an approximate location, within half a kilometer, so it’s not perfect. It’s a free app that makes excellent use of a previously hidden feature in Windows 7. I love it.

techie-buzz-recommended-software

Techie Buzz Rating: 4/5 (Excellent)