u‑blox’ wireless/positioning solutions
Because of the exciting and numerous applications for converged wireless and positioning technologies running on portable devices, u‑blox has implemented special features in its family of cellular modules to ease the design effort required for the integration of wireless with GPS.
For example, combining a LEON or SARA GSM/GPRS module with a u‑blox GPS receiver allows designers to have full access to the GPS receiver directly via the modem: it relays control messages to the GPS receiver via a simple 2‑wire I2C interface. This means a 2nd interface, is not necessary: fully control of the GPS receiver is achieved with AT commands via the modem. The result is simple and cost effective GSM/GPS integration, making optimal use of PCB space.
Embedded A‑GPS client
Another key advantage of u‑blox modem modules is that they contain an embedded AssistNow A‑GPS client supporting both online and offline Assisted GPS. The combined GSM/GPS solution with AssistNow client results in numerous benefits:
- Better GPS performance in weak GPS signal conditions such as urban canyons
- Significantly faster Time‑to‑First‑Fix (seconds, not minutes)
- No resources required from the application’s microcontroller
- No software integration effort on the host microcontroller required
- Assisted GPS client firmware is embedded in LEON GSM/GPRS modems
The marriage of wireless technologies such as GSM and UMTS with GPS has an exciting future, enabling new and compelling mass‑market services for businesses, shopping, tourism, public and private transportation, social networking and entertainment, as well as for logistics, fleet management and emergency services.
Most importantly, these converged services offer clear value propositions and revenue models to allow all players in the ecosystem, end‑users, device and end‑product manufacturers and service providers, to benefit.
"The Promising Marriage of Wireless and GPS Technologies" (PDF)