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  • 1 Post By hparsons
  1.    #1  
    I thought I had this figured out. Originally, I figured that the TouchPad WiFi had GPS, but wasn't sure it was usable - possibly still needing a phone radio for "assistance". Then I read that it's on the device, and working. Then I read that the Qualcom processor used actually doesn't have the GPS. I pretty much accepted that.

    Then today I ran across the diagnostics tests on the TouchPad. Just for grins, I decided to try the GPS test to see what happens.

    I was surprised - it said it works! "The GPS radio receiver detected the signal" is the response I get when I run the test.

    I figured, "OK, probably just latent information. I bet I get some location in Taiwan, or maybe Apple's HQ when I look up the coordinates". Oops, not. It located me exactly where I am.

    Anyone have any idea what's going on with this?
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  2. Mize's Avatar
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    #2  
    I thought the wifi touch only had Google positioning...
  3. #3  
    There shouldn't be much confusing about this. Turn your wifi off and retest your "GPS", it won't work.

    True GPS is not part of the APQ8060, which is the CPU chipset on the TouchPad.

    "GPS" is integrated into the Atheros Wifi chipset; however, it's just wifi network location services even though it's called GPS in the system.
  4.    #4  
    Quote Originally Posted by EvilKell View Post
    There shouldn't be much confusing about this. Turn your wifi off and retest your "GPS", it won't work.

    ... it's just wifi network location services even though it's called GPS in the system.
    You don't find labelling WiFi as GPS to be confusing? OK, you're not nearly as easily confused as I.

    I'll run the test, as you said, and see what it does, but it's still confusing to label WiFi as GPS. I can understand leaving the positioning services in, as that's what they are, but if it's not GPS, don't call it that.
  5.    #5  
    Ran the test with the WiFi off. It wouldn't do anything. So, that's the answer, but I still find it confusing that they chose to label it GPS.

    I'm also surprised at how accurate WiFi positioning is. I really expected it to be off somewhat.
  6. nyallj's Avatar
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    #6  
    You don't mind that you're pinpointing your location, do you?
    NNJ
  7. #7  
    Quote Originally Posted by hparsons View Post
    You don't find labelling WiFi as GPS to be confusing? OK, you're not nearly as easily confused as I.

    I'll run the test, as you said, and see what it does, but it's still confusing to label WiFi as GPS. I can understand leaving the positioning services in, as that's what they are, but if it's not GPS, don't call it that.
    I have just read this in a number of threads already. I agree, it should not be called GPS at all.
  8.    #8  
    Quote Originally Posted by nyallj View Post
    You don't mind that you're pinpointing your location, do you?
    Nah, not really. I'm at work. I've posted on here enough who I work for. If someone wants to find me at my job, I'm not that hard to locate.

    If I was at home, I'd probably have erased it, even though that information's not so hard to find either.
    nyallj likes this.
  9.    #9  
    Quote Originally Posted by EvilKell View Post
    I have just read this in a number of threads already. I agree, it should not be called GPS at all.
    Excellent! We agree on something

    I've never really thought much about WiFi location services, and as I said, I was surprised at how accurate it is (the GPS on my Pre is often not as close as this). A quick search for "WiFi location services" gives some pretty vague information, but if I'm understanding it right, various services (like Google) map locations to MAC addresses of WiFi devices, and that's how the devices get the information, correct?

    And if I remember right, when I activated the TouchPad, it's using Google location services.

    Is anyone familiar with the details of how all this works?

    Apparently (and ironically, I got most of this from the iPad threads), you don't have to actually connect to the device for the location services to use its information. Is that correct?

    Also, does it poll only the strongest router, or does it look at all of them that it can communicate with?

    Personally, I find this pretty fascinating.

    Also, a little "big brotherish". Folks that prefer to remain hidden are probably finding these pretty scary times.
  10. #10  
    Also, turn wifi on but do not connect to any access points and run the test. I'm curious as to what results you would get. I've heard people say that the agps module needs wwan module in order to exist, but gps does not since it does not require cell tower assisting. People still get the 2 mixed up. Remember the wifi version ipad has gps.

    Downloaded the spec sheet from qualcomm regarding their new Snapdragon_8x60 lineup, here what was listed for gps: gpsOne Gen 8 with GNSS Standalone, Assisted, gpsOneXTRA, 2dB improvement vs. Gen 7

    Don't know what to make of it since it says standalone and assisted, no exceptions listed. It's vague and unclear if it is all or nothing.

    All I can say is, I don't think there is a gps on/off switch on the touchpad. Since gps if a form of wireless communication it kinda sorta makes some sense that it's control would be tied in with the wireless on/off switch. So to test whether standalone gps (not agps, which we all know can"t possibly exist since there is no wireless carrier connection) exists leave the wifi on without connecting to a network.
  11. #11  
    Quote Originally Posted by hparsons View Post
    Ran the test with the WiFi off. It wouldn't do anything. So, that's the answer, but I still find it confusing that they chose to label it GPS.

    I'm also surprised at how accurate WiFi positioning is. I really expected it to be off somewhat.
    I presume you were in your house with stonking WiFi signal. I.e probably very close to the router. Try it in the middle of a field.
  12. #12  
    Quote Originally Posted by champiful View Post
    Downloaded the spec sheet from qualcomm regarding their new Snapdragon_8x60 lineup, here what was listed for gps: gpsOne Gen 8 with GNSS Standalone, Assisted, gpsOneXTRA, 2dB improvement vs. Gen 7
    I can see where you could be confused. Qualcomm do 2 versions of the 8x60. The MSM8x60 and the APQ8x60. MSM is the mobile version and includes GPS and a modem. APQ doesn't include either. If you recall the Veer has a MSM7230 and has GPS + 4G built in. I've not seen any details for the Touchpad 4G, but I suspect it has an MSM8x60 SOC.

    AnandTech - Qualcomm's Announces Krait CPU: The Successor to Scorpion
  13. #13  
    Quote Originally Posted by hparsons View Post
    Excellent! We agree on something

    I've never really thought much about WiFi location services, and as I said, I was surprised at how accurate it is (the GPS on my Pre is often not as close as this). A quick search for "WiFi location services" gives some pretty vague information, but if I'm understanding it right, various services (like Google) map locations to MAC addresses of WiFi devices, and that's how the devices get the information, correct?

    And if I remember right, when I activated the TouchPad, it's using Google location services.

    Is anyone familiar with the details of how all this works?

    Apparently (and ironically, I got most of this from the iPad threads), you don't have to actually connect to the device for the location services to use its information. Is that correct?

    Also, does it poll only the strongest router, or does it look at all of them that it can communicate with?

    Personally, I find this pretty fascinating.

    Also, a little "big brotherish". Folks that prefer to remain hidden are probably finding these pretty scary times.
    Right, Google and other companies, like Skyhook, drove around the country logging WiFi access points. They use those databases to create maps based on network topology. You don't have to be connected to a specific access point for the GPS functionality to recognize it.
  14. #14  
    Quote Originally Posted by nappy View Post
    Right, Google and other companies, like Skyhook, drove around the country logging WiFi access points. They use those databases to create maps based on network topology. You don't have to be connected to a specific access point for the GPS functionality to recognize it.
    I think you still have to have the relevant part of the database cached in order to use it when not connected to the internet. As far as I know(and i could easily be wrong on this one), it creates a log of all the access points it sees and then downloads the positions later when your connected.
  15.    #15  
    Quote Originally Posted by hagster View Post
    I presume you were in your house with stonking WiFi signal. I.e probably very close to the router. Try it in the middle of a field.
    Actually at work, with about 19 access points scattered throughout the building. As to pinpointing where I am, the two armed security guards at the entrance to the building give me some sense of security.
  16. nyallj's Avatar
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    #16  
    Quote Originally Posted by nappy View Post
    Right, Google and other companies, like Skyhook, drove around the country logging WiFi access points. They use those databases to create maps based on network topology. You don't have to be connected to a specific access point for the GPS functionality to recognize it.
    Were you being serious? Because GPS over(?) WiFi seems to pinpoint me pretty accurately in my country too. And I know Google wasn't driving around here!
    NNJ
  17. #17  
    They use a lot of crowdsourced data too.

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