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iPhone 4S Has GLONASS GPS Support

Article by: Darren Griffin
Date: 19 Oct 2011

Apple has updated the technical specs page for its latest iPhone, the 4S, to add GLONASS GPS support.

Many of you will know that GLONASS is the Russian Federation's equivalent of the US NAVSTAR GPS network of navigation satellites. Recent advances in GPS chipset design have seen a number of manufacturers offering chipsets with support for NAVSTAR and GLONASS and, in future, the EU's own solution, Galileo.

Adding support for more satellite networks means faster satellite acquisition and less issues due to reception difficulties as there are a greater number of satellites in view at any one time. GLONASS has 24 satellites offering global coverage.

As an aside, tomorrow marks the launch date for the first two in-orbit validation satellites for the Galileo constellation. The pair will be launched from the European Space Agency Spaceport in Kourou, French Guyana atop a Soyuz launch vehicle.

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Posted by mikeprytherch on Fri Oct 21, 2011 8:26 am Reply with quote

Anybody know if the 4S has better GPS reception so that it can work in your pocket ?

Whilst riding my bike I like to use CamerAlert with the phone in my pocket, but exiting moel don't get a signal.

Posted by Darren on Fri Oct 21, 2011 8:43 am Reply with quote

Well, if it is able to use GLONASS that will help, but you're asking a lot of GPS. Your body is a very effective shields blocking the already very week GPS signal.

Darren Griffin - Editor

Posted by mikeprytherch on Wed Oct 26, 2011 9:05 pm Reply with quote

Darren Wrote:
Well, if it is able to use GLONASS that will help, but you're asking a lot of GPS. Your body is a very effective shields blocking the already very week GPS signal.

Not really, I use my old 3GS which is jailbroken and link it to a bluetooth GPS which is also in my pocket, that picks up the signal no problem at all, it would be nice to just carry one phone around instead of 2.

Posted by Darren on Thu Oct 27, 2011 7:50 am Reply with quote

For some reason I'd imagines it was in your back pocket, if it's in the pocket of a jacket then it should work as is? I've always found the iPhone 4 has a pretty sensitive GPS chipset (for a smartphone) and mine continues to work fine even when left in the glovebox or centre armrest cubby.

A bluetooth GPS is always going to have some advantage as it will have a far more efficient antenna, the limitations on space in a smartphone mean that the antenna is always a compromise, but even so, I'd have thought the iPhone4 was capable of working in a jacket pocket.

Darren Griffin - Editor

Posted by Strawbs on Sat Nov 26, 2011 5:10 pm Reply with quote

this post is getting a bit old and I'm surprised nobody has pointed out that GPS on the 4 is light years ahead of the 3GS! the 4S is about equal to the 4, so you're bound to see improvement over the 3.

Also, I use motionX GPS and am tracked well enough with the 4S in my breast pocket.

HTH. Cool

iPhone 12 Pro

Posted by dorsetwurzel on Sat Nov 26, 2011 6:09 pm Reply with quote

Thats good to hear. Still waiting for my 4s to ship from O2 as an 'early' upgrade...

Posted by Seamaster on Sun Nov 27, 2011 2:32 pm Reply with quote

GPS on the 4S is a completely different proposition to GPS on the 3GS.

As a very specific example, I could never get pedestrian mode to work in TomTom on the 3GS. The phone never seemed to be able to work out where it was, or which direction it was travelling in at walking speeds. The 4S, in contrast, works brilliantly in pedestrian mode, delivering the very thing I bought TomTom for iPhone for in the first place on-foot direction in strange cities with no use of data.

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