Sep 8, 2010
First of all congratulations everybody. I am soooo excited for each and every one of you. Seriously, I have a big smile on my face because I know that excitement, that joy you all are feeling. You won't be putting your phone down for days, I GUARANTEE IT! You guys seriously just purchased the most kick ass Android device, along with the rest of the Galaxy S phones!
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The Vibrant and Captivate users are watching closely. Samsung has promised us a GPS optimization, and presumably your Epic and now Fascinate already has it. So you guys are our life line right now.
For those of you who will be testing out your GPS in the next few days, I'd like to make a few comments, so that we can get accurate GPS testing, to determine if the phone is actually using satellites like it should, or depends instead heavily on less accurate cell phone towers to determine your location, which means the GPS is still busted on these phones.
Okay, so here it goes. When testing your GPS, "Use Wireless Locations" should be turned off. Settings>location & security>Use wireless networks...make sure its UNCHECKED.
Read the note right under it, it says "See location in applications(such as Maps) using wireless networks."
If you put a check mark next to this, and turn this ON, then how will you ever know if the phone is functionally using the satellites. This is the big question with the phone, can it use and lock onto satellites or is Samsung hoping we use less accurate cell towers. Samsung hopes you have this on. I ask that you keep this unchecked, this is the only way to truly test the Satellite usage.
Further, by checking this, you are allowing Google to collect location data, even when no applications are running, they say its anonymous, but you never know.
So uncheck "Use Wireless Networks," restart your phone, make sure this is still unchecked, power up Google Maps, and go for a good long drive. Then please share your real world results. Including, how quickly it located you, was the location correct, how wide of a blue circle is there around your location, did the phone ever drop the GPS signal, etc. No 2 min drives, you really need to drive around a lot to dependably test this.
You can also download "GPS Test" from the Android Market, it will show you how many satellites your phone views, versus how many satellites are locked in. You need 4 LOCKED on satellites to get a true 3D positional lock that includes x,y,z,t. GPS test also shows your accuracy in ft, up in the upper right corner. Good accuracy is anything less than 10 ft. I have phones that get 5ft accuracy, the best accuracy I can get with my Vibrant is 40ft. Please report this number also. If you have time, upload a screen shot of your GPS test, or just take a pic of your phone running the GPS test, upload it and share your results.
You can also use the built in native GPS test. It is virtually the same as the GPS TEST program above, it's just not a pretty visual interface.
Go to your phones dialer, as if you are making a phone call, and dial in *#1472365# or if that doesn't work try *#*#1472365#*#*Then click on "get position test."
This test will show you your longitude and latitude, you can then enter this into Google maps to see how accurately it located you. It gives you accuracy in meters, convert to feet by multiplying the number given in meters by 3.28, you will now have your accuracy in ft.
The native built in test will show you have many satellites it has in view, the satellites that it actually locks onto will have an asterisk next to it. Please report both these numbers. Remember you need 4 locked on satellites for true precise 3D positioning.
I'm really interested to hear from prior smart-phone Android users, because these users will be able to make a direct comparison of the GPS to prior phones.