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Compass\Sky Maps Problem

Discussion in 'Android Devices' started by nacatomi, Aug 16, 2010.

  1. nacatomi

    nacatomi Android Enthusiast
    Thread Starter

    Hi All,
    not sure if this is a FroYo issue or not so I'm creating a new thread. I have only noticed it after FroYo but it may have been happening before. Every time I go into the "compass" app it says there is an abnormal magnetic field and I have to recalibrate and then it appears to work.

    Also when I load up Google Sky Map (excellent bragging app) it now seems to think that I am in the southern hemisphere so wont point to obvious things like moon\sun as they are on the other side of the planet according to the app. Recalibrating fixes it until the next time I go in again.

    Also I downloaded a moon phases widget which asked me if I wanted it to autodetect my location and I said yes and it thought I was in the Southern Hemisphere.

    I can add that GPS works fine so not sure if Google\HTC have buggered something since FroYo as I cant remember it being this bad before. Is anyone else having problems or could they test and let me know.

    I'm on 3 in the UK on Standard OTA FroYo, have tried restarting and a full hard reset.

  2. Phenomenological

    Phenomenological Android Expert

    Do you have a wifi network that the phone could be obtaining its location from and getting it hideously wrong?
  3. nacatomi

    nacatomi Android Enthusiast
    Thread Starter

    Don't think so, Sky Maps correctly detected my hometown and the compass app using GPS got my street ok.
  4. nikosal

    nikosal Lurker

    It is a problem I have noticed too, after froyo. Compass has gone completely crazy and (excellent up to pre froyo era) google sky map believes that "this star over there" is always the same, regardless where I point my desire.

    Terrible problem.
  5. GavChap

    GavChap Newbie

    I had this, you need to calibrate your sensors on starting up the app. Just flip your phone over in your hands a couple of times, or wave it in the air in a figure 8.

    This video shows the best way, works 100% of the time all the time.

    YouTube - Best Compass Calibration Method (iPhone/G1/etc.)

    MF DROID Member

    +1 worked for me
    nikosal likes this.
  7. nikosal

    nikosal Lurker

    Yes it works (thanks for the video), but if you open another app and come back to compass, it is again not calibrated.
  8. gie62001

    gie62001 Android Enthusiast

    does anyone of you with with compass problem have phone case on with say magnetic clip? or standing next to some strangelly high magnetic field? if yes then remove the case :)
    ive got a case with magnetic clip and yes it shows north pole where the magnet is or say that compass needs to be calibrated.
    or at work there are some technologies that have really strong magnets inside,thus, it also shows wrong north pole
    not sure if it help or it's just froyo problem
  9. sookster54

    sookster54 Android Expert

    Same problem here, google sky maps doesn't want to work on the Desire, works like a charm on my Quench though. I can't find the compass calibrate, I downloaded a compass app and it doesn't save the calibration.
  10. Dave_Wigley

    Dave_Wigley Lurker

    Exactly the same problem with my HTC Desire. Each time any application using the compass is restarted then the magnetic north is about 40 deg off from correct alignment. Recalibration solves the problem but has to be done every single time the compass is used. If you use an App such as GPS Status which can switch between the inbuilt compass sensor (for low speeds) and GPS for higher speeds (just above walking) you can easily see the issue.

    Mine's on UK T-Mobile (for my sins).

    Nacatomi - How do we go about reporting such a problem ? :thinking:
  11. nacatomi

    nacatomi Android Enthusiast
    Thread Starter

    Strangely mine seems to have calmed down a bit since I did a full reset (which was a bit of a pain) and generally seems happier now.
  12. nikosal

    nikosal Lurker

    happy to report google sky map works perfectly after calibrating with the move the above video shows. Thanks twice gavchap!!

    Note: Don't have to go to any menu or anything, just do the move while using google sky map and every star or planet will be in the... right side of the sky again.
  13. G3SNA

    G3SNA Newbie

    I have had this problem since v2.1 and I still have it with FroYo. I have read elsewhere that a factory reset fixes it (for a while - then it returns) but I have not tried this myself. It's not in a magnetic case and as far as I know it has not been near any strong magnetic field. It happens with more than one of the compass apps in the market place - I have tried several. My own favourite choice is the Compass app from Snaptic. Despite the responses I have seen from suppliers (eg: Vodafone forum) I suspect that individual phones are not faulty; this is a common fault on too many phones. BTW - I set my app to GPS type compass to get a reading of the magnetic strength situation. When I switch to the app it shows 'Strong' with a value of up to 100/49 micro tesla. When I calibrate by waving in a vertical figure of eight it drops to 'Normal' with the value 46/49 mico tesla. It looks to me like the OS does not store the calibration data correctly. This happens on a range of Droid phones from various suppliers so IMHO it is either down to the associated chip or it is a feature (bug) within the basic OS. eg: Perhaps the calibration data holding area is overwritten by some other function in the OS? Has anyone else looked into this deeper than me at this I wonder?
  14. azak

    azak Member

    Performing that specific motion while in the Google Sky view mode fixed the problem for me, albeit probably temporarily. I'll probably look like an idiot whenever I move my phone around like that in public, but at least it'll fix it!

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