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Pocket GPS World :: View topic - SiRF announce SiRFInstantFixII technology to speed startup
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SiRF announce SiRFInstantFixII technology to speed startup

 
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MikeB
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Location: Essex, UK

PostPosted: Wed Jan 16, 2008 9:49 pm    Post subject: SiRF announce SiRFInstantFixII technology to speed startup Reply with quote

Last week at CES SiRF announced a new firmware solution to improve the startup time of a GPS device without Internet connectivity. To put it simply SiRF have developed a predictive algorithm which allows the critical satellite position data to be predicted for up to 3 days.

This will improve the time to first fix when you get into the car in an ideal environment, but will be even more useful in cities where the GPS signals are typically weaker. This works because the satellite position (ephemeris) data is transmitted once every 30 seconds, if the signal is weak the GPS must wait for the next 30 seconds etc.

In an AGPS device the ephemeris data can be downloaded from the Internet, allowing faster fixes. For normal GPS if the ephemeris data is known (hot start) the GPS can fix in one second. Using the predictive algorithm allows the GPS to do a hot fix and then update the internal ephemeris data when it becomes available.
Official SiRF Press Release wrote:
Mobile Navigation Devices Can Have Start-Up Times As Low As 5 Seconds Without Requiring Any Network Connectivity


SAN JOSE, Calif., Jan. 2, 2008 - SiRF Technology Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ: SIRF), a leading provider of GPS-powered location platforms, today introduced SiRFInstantFixII, an autonomous version of SiRF's original SiRFInstantFix technology that is designed to significantly improve the start-up times of portable navigation devices (PNDs) and other mobile navigation devices without needing any network connectivity for assistance or updates. Available now for both SiRFstarIII GPS receivers and SiRFatlas and SiRFtitan multifunction SoC navigation processors, SiRFInstantFixII achieves GPS start-ups in as little as five seconds so that mainstream consumers can begin navigating as soon as they're ready to drive.
"Our groundbreaking SiRFInstantFixII technology makes the frequent start-up waits for PNDs a thing of the past," said Kanwar Chadha, founder and vice president of marketing for SiRF Technology. "By not requiring any network connectivity or downloads, it significantly improves the daily navigation experience for consumers of mobile navigation devices."

SiRFInstantFixII can reduce the time to first fix (TTFF) to as little as five seconds with excellent positional accuracy, an important attribute for navigation devices. SiRFInstantFixII accomplishes this using sophisticated, patent-pending algorithms that enable the PND to model the behavior of visible GPS satellites during the day and predict their position in the sky for up to three days in the future. SiRFInstantFixII continuously refines its calculations based on the latest data it receives from the satellites being tracked every time the PND is used. SiRFInstantFixII performs these calculations completely autonomously, without ever needing updates of any kind from a network.

"Helping consumers to explore more is the Mio Technology company mission. As a leader in the mobile navigation device market, we strive to provide consumers with a positive, free-spirited, open, unexpected and seamless user experience, and we believe that eliminating the start-up wait commonly experienced by many PND users is a great step in that direction," said Samuel Wang, President of Mio Technology. "We are very excited about the positive effect that SiRFInstantFixII will have on the PND user experience. Through our close alliance with SiRF, we look forward to bringing more innovative technologies to market and helping consumers to enrich their life and the way they see the world."

The new SiRFInstantFixII has been specifically designed to meet the needs of mass-market consumers using non-connected devices where a network-based update would be cumbersome or otherwise undesirable. Manufacturers already using SiRF's original SiRFInstantFix will find it continues to provide consistently high performance for network-connected devices and for products where updates can be performed seamlessly with little or no user interaction. SiRF offers manufacturers the greatest flexibility to choose between the new "unplugged" SiRFInstantFixII (with three days of satellite predictions) for PND type devices, which may have no connectivity, and the "classic" SiRFInstantFix (with up to seven days of satellite predictions) for connected devices to best meet their end customer requirements.

Why SiRFInstantFix?
While in theory determining location using GPS satellites is a simple process of triangulation, the reality is much more complex. First, the GPS receiver needs to find and "lock" onto enough satellites to be able to calculate its location, a process called acquisition. With its 200,000 correlators, SiRF's innovative SiRFstarIII architecture made the acquisition of satellites very fast. To calculate accurate position, however, the GPS receiver needs to know where each of these GPS satellites is in the sky with a very high degree of accuracy.

Every satellite requires 30 seconds to broadcast its precise location, and the GPS receiver must be able to download this data from each satellite it needs for a fix. This data is typically valid only for two to three hours. If anything interrupts the signal while receiving this data, such as a building or tree, the receiver has to wait another 30 seconds to completely download the data from the satellite. In real-world conditions, where the GPS receiver is usually moving, it can take up to several minutes to obtain all the data the receiver needs to perform its calculations and obtain a fix, resulting in a long period with a great deal of location uncertainty before navigation can begin.

Using SiRFInstantFixII, affordable PNDs can not only start tracking satellites and navigating more quickly, they can do it using signals much weaker than those needed to obtain satellite position data the traditional way, removing the barrier that often stands in the way of successfully navigating under tough GPS signal conditions.

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Paul_ffitch
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Joined: Jan 04, 2008
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 17, 2008 7:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

MikeB: Do you know whether this is, in principle, something that can be included in firmware upgrades for satnavs? If so, there will be a lot of interest in whether particular makes can get an appropriate upgrade...
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MikeB
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 17, 2008 9:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Paul_ffitch wrote:
MikeB: Do you know whether this is, in principle, something that can be included in firmware upgrades for satnavs? If so, there will be a lot of interest in whether particular makes can get an appropriate upgrade...

In theory as it is firmware it should be possible to upgrade existing GPS devices that are compatible. In practice though it is unlikely that that will happen as updating the firmware is not trivial and can easily go wrong.
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aclem
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Joined: May 05, 2006
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 26, 2008 12:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

There is a good two-page general description and technical data sheet on SiRF's web site at: http://www.sirf.com/products/SiRFInstantFixProductInsert.pdf.

Avilability and pricing, also from SiRF's site, states:
Quote:
SiRFInstantFixII is available now and works with all SiRF Multifunction SoC navigation processors and SiRFstarIII-based procucts. Customers can contact their SiRF representatives for pricing and more information.
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JohnGray
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Joined: Nov 22, 2004
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 27, 2008 7:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sorry, but you've left a trailing full stop on your link.

Try http://www.sirf.com/products/SiRFInstantFixProductInsert.pdf.
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