GPS issues?Support


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  1. Beards

    Beards Well-Known Member

    Don't worry about not being able to do a screen shot for proof... I believe you.

    Hopefully we shall have some news sometime towards the end of next week on this subject if Clove manage to carry out the tests correctly and compare against their next batch of SGS phones. :)

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  2. sjdean

    sjdean Well-Known Member

    Hi Beards, Forza,

    Firstly Forza, I'll just say, in my defence, that you only had something like 11 posts, and I've not seen anybody yet with XXJF5. You could be telling porkies. Or you may not. I don't know. It is a public forum and you get all kinds of people on here.

    It's still interesting though, love to see where this comes from, whether it was a special request by Virgin or something.

    Beards, yes, I should have come back to the group yesterday. I did get an email off Clove, but a hectic day at work, I didn't feel like doing too much else.

    I can't ask for anything more off Clove, they've been so super through the process. As a result, I've recommended them to a friend of mine who wants to get a Wildfire.

    Be interesting to see what comes from Samsung, but I suspect two things.

    That there is both a hardware design issue and a software fault.

    Unlike the HTC Desire, the Samsung isn't able to lock onto more than eight satellites. I think as a consequence, it picks the eight strongest satellites rather than the eight most different satellites.

    Consequently, you walk behind a large building, it could easily lose half the satellites, then it needs to spend time acquiring lock to other satellites only to find you've then walked past the building and it hurriedly re-establishes lock to the original stronger satellites.

    HTC I think has a 12 channel GPS, Samsung use 8.
  3. firefox73

    firefox73 Well-Known Member

    Received my SGS yesterday.

    Running the same Baseband as you guys (xxJF3).

    Have to say that the GPS appears to work fine. Often got 10 satellites locked and does pick up a poor signal indoors in some room. Downloaded Jog tracker app and it overlaid perfectly onto the Google map background, even showing where I crossed over a B road.

    One thing I've seen on some of the forums is that many people complain after having done an update with Google maps that their GPS's don't work nearly as well. I've not updated it, purely for this reason.

    You guys have far more expertise on this than a 'newbie' like me but could this possibly be part of the problem? Did you update Google Maps recently?
  4. sjdean

    sjdean Well-Known Member

    I've tried it with and without the update, I've even changed the settings through LBS Test Programs, factory reset etc, and still no good.

    When you say you get locks on 10 Satellites, how do you determine this? If using GPS Test, do you actually see 10 non grey signals?

    Remember, a grey satellite in this is a satellite the unit sees but isn't using to calculate position.
  5. firefox73

    firefox73 Well-Known Member

    Ok, I was using GPS Status which just stepping outside the house showed it was using as a fix 9 Sats but actually had 11 in view.

    Moving across to your app that I just downloaded, I had 10 Sats in view but it was using 8. The weakest was still 30+ with the average being in the 40 - 50 range. It gave me an accuracy of 14.6 feet. What I did notice of great interest was the way you hold the phone has a massive impact on signal strength.

    Holding it horizontally more than halved the strength of the satelittes, giving results around the 20 mark, whereas holding it upright as if taking a photo of someone produced the 50+ scores.

    At no time though during any test did the SGS lock on to weaker strength satellites when there were stronger signal present.

    Despite holding the phone in the correct position, it would indicate to me that your phone was suffering from some sort of software issue whereby the SGS software is biasing the weaker signal strengths over the stronger ones. What sort of EPE (Estimated Position Error) were you getting with yours using the 4 satelittes? My +/-14.6 feet is as good if not better than I had hoped for.

    Hope that this is of use to you?
  6. Beards

    Beards Well-Known Member

    Hello Simon,
    I'm pleased Clove are looking after you.
    When I spoke with them I mentioned I was aware your phone had been returned for testing and that I wished to be kept informed of the progress ~ hence why I know about the further testing it will receive next week once the new stock arrive.
    If you have any problems let me know (not that I feel it will come to that as Chris and his team always put the customer first).

    Beards
  7. forza2020

    forza2020 Well-Known Member


    No probs. The reason I have only made a few posts is because I have only just got an Android phone!

    No reason for me to lie. I was just perusing all the threads when I noticed someone mentioning Baseband versions so I checked mine. And told everyone.

    Hopefully SOMEONE else will have the same version as me and post on here!

    Great forum. Love to all.
  8. optix

    optix Member

    This is what finally fixed my SGS GPS problems:

    Dial *#*#1472365#*#*

    - in tech menu, go into "Application settings"
    - enable Skyhook.

    *** Do NOT change anything else ***

    Verify with GPS test app (free) from Market. I now have 5-10dB better SNR on average and GPS does lock to satellites supertight =)

    Cheers.

    PS: I run XXJG3 (pda) and XXJG1 (phone + csc). Upgrading from stock XXJF3 to XXJFF and XXJG3 didn't fix the problem. Skyhook did.
  9. sjdean

    sjdean Well-Known Member

    Im not convinced of Skyhook, primarily because it's not a GPS solution. It is a solution that works alongside GPS to help triangulate your position based on cell tower signals and other wi-fi access points.

    Like Google and their Streetview, they have had people quite literally roaming around the country - possibly users with their iPhones reporting "new" and "updated" information back to base about wifi and cell tower signals.

    I think it's a hack more than it is a GPS fix.

    I would also be interested to see however what the device is like in a tracking mode, using MyTracks and walking the phone round the block.

    It shouldn't get rid of the GPS problem as far as I can tell.

    But who knows.
  10. optix

    optix Member

    Well, the funny thing is I don't have SIM card installed, Wifi is unconfigured and turned off. So how is it possible it uses triangulation and/or Wifi signals to assist GPS? Try it yourself, it doesn't take a lot of time =)

    Tracking mode is now - at least for me - perfect. I didn't find stock GPS problem annoying using just Maps to use My location and such. It was tracking that made the problem obvious. That's why most people don't even know they have GPS problem imo.
  11. sjdean

    sjdean Well-Known Member

    How is tracking (MyTracks etc) with Skyhook turned on?

    I must admit I tried it once on my phone and found no discernable different. My phone is now back with the retailer doing tests.

    Do you also get locks on to satellites (using GPS Test) where the SnR is 20 or less? ie, do you see any orange bars?
  12. optix

    optix Member

    I find tracking, like already mentioned my previous post, perfect. Using Skyhook mode it doesn't lock when SNR is less than 22 or so, but that is also without Skyhook mode using XXJG3. Skyhook mode just made locks stable, so when tracking you don't get 'funny pictures' anymore =)

    While I know that's not a fix per se, it solved my problem. I suspect that turning on Skyhook mode doesn't really do what it is supposed to, but rather enables some part of the GPS code that should be enabled by default. Otherwise I don't know how to explain Skyhook working without SIM card and without WIFI.

    PS: Just checked with my Motorola Milestone - GPS test shows that the GPS also doesn't lock to satellites with SNR less than around 22. I've never paid attention to this before, as there were no problems with the Milestone's GPS. So my situation/results with GPS on Milestone and SGS with Skyhook enabled is about the same.
  13. sjdean

    sjdean Well-Known Member

    Skyhook, as well as checking WiFi and Cell Towers, also does seem to integrate to GPS. Maybe it is more intelligent in its use of GPS Satellites than Samsung?

    Maybe that's correct:

    SKYHOOK Wireless: How It Works > FAQ

    Hybrid positioning system - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    Skyhook Wireless - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

  14. optix

    optix Member

    If Skyhook somehow integrates to SGS' GPS in a way to only interpret received GPS signals with a better algorithm (without cellular and/or wifi help), which result in stable satellite locks, then obviously yes.

    But if Skyhook by design cannot reliably operate without cellular or WIFI help - basically only with GPS signals - then that's not the answer we're looking for.
  15. firefox73

    firefox73 Well-Known Member

    Did anyone else try holding their SGS horizontally and notice that the signal strength more than halved of their available satelittes?

    SJDean, did you hold you SGS upright as it would be in a car mount or did you have it horizontal as you would if you had it on a cycle mount? Large difference between the two results.
  16. Evil Peter

    Evil Peter Well-Known Member

    The test I did earlier today had no difference between horizontal and vertical positions. Got 10 satellites visible and 8 used (5m accuracy) with everything original.
  17. firefox73

    firefox73 Well-Known Member

    Must just be mine then, as everytime I test it it drops wildly when horizotal. Just another quirk on some SGS's I guess? Strange how so many have differing results across the globe.
  18. Evil Peter

    Evil Peter Well-Known Member

    Yes, it's hard to say why there are differences. It could be differences in the phone or it could be that the places we tested in yielded different results in that regard.

    Something that does works strange though is that when I switch between horizontal and vertical view, or when the screen is turned off, it seems to reset the GPS.
  19. Beards

    Beards Well-Known Member

    Has anyone else found an improvement in enabling Skyhook?
  20. sjdean

    sjdean Well-Known Member

    Hi Beards,

    Clove are sending me a new phone. They compared it with some new stock and noted a difference even in Google Maps.

    In Google Maps, my old phone was bouncing around all over the place. The new one was rock solid.

    They're both running XXJF3 baseband.

    I would suspect as well as a few bugs in the firmware, that there are also some hardware issues which is why some people don't see results even after updating the baseband and turning on Skyhook.

    Once I get the phone though, I'll let you know.

    Cya
    Simon
  21. drjmo

    drjmo Active Member

    I've been testing my new handset with Orange maps & Google maps, and it now appears to be working. It's got to be a duff handset I was sent. I'm still on the XXJF3 baseband as well.
  22. Beards

    Beards Well-Known Member

    Thank you Simon.
    I sincerely look forward to hearing your thoughts when it arrives. :)
  23. wdri

    wdri New Member

  24. yakboy

    yakboy Well-Known Member

    Guys - haven't read the whole post but wanted to get my input in as I'm also running the hotly debated I9000XXJF5 baseband and my GPS is running like a bunch o' crap. It was bought from Virgin mobile, late June for those interested.

    My first limited navigation test I posted about on page 1 only found issue where the horizon was limited. Today I have done a much more extensive test driving from Somerset to South wales, this covered country roads, both open and tree covered, town driving (through Bath) and all types of open country on the motorway.. oh and a hoofing great bridge.

    I had lock failures throughout the entire journey, in all environments. The signal lock circle in Navigation (google maps) would drop to 100M then 500M really quite frequently. It certainly hates wet trees but I had issues at 70-90mph with open sky. Not acceptable.

    It's usable but I can not trust my SGS for use around a busy city, say London. The loss of lock on a junction is just terrible, Google maps Nav is relatively quick to un-stick from the original journey and can easily sling you many streets away in the blink of an eye. On more than one occasion today I nearly went the wrong way on motorway round-a-bouts.

    I've made no complaint yet but this GPS fail married with the bloody painful hanging bugs and utterly loathsome Samsung 'improvements' is beginning to really irritate me. The worse bit is is that when the phone is actually working well, my god it is FAST. Soooo much faster than my Nexus One... but right now I'd swap back in the blink of an eye :(
    TCC likes this.
  25. yakboy

    yakboy Well-Known Member

    FYI - finished reading this post and am going to give the phone a try with Skyhook enabled. Certainly my limited and rapid test with GPS Test saw a fix in around a 1/3 of the time without out. SIM card inserted and Wifi on, from my back garden.

    Tomorrow I have an approx hour journey to navigate, will report back.

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