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GPS on o2 XDA Orbit

8 posts in this topic

Posted

I am the proud owner of an 02 xda orbit, which 02 have just started issuing with Windows Mobile 6 Professional. I am now trying to figure out how to use the GPS! I don't want to have to buy mapping software, I just want to get a GPS grid reference, so I can use it with paper maps. I have found several small programs that claims to do just that(The most promising, and the one I would like to use is GridHiker . I can't find any instructions for it, but the button with a sattelite dish hovering above the world seems like the button to use to get a reading!! ). Postings about Co-Pilot and TomTom suggest that the settings should be com4 and 4800, but I get "Time for GPS data input exceeded, check port setting" and the top of the menu says "no GPS input". I've also tried com1,2,3,5,6,7 and 8 with either the same message or "can't open serial port for GPS input". Not entirely sure why com ports come into this anyway as GPS is inbuilt to an XDA orbit and I am not connected to a pc! Also, from time to time a piece of software called QuickGPS, which was on the device when I got it, pops up and tries to connect to GPRS and attempts(usually fails) to download stuff which I've already done once (it suggests this is to speed up connection to GPS)

Can anyone give me any points as to what I am doing wrong? I am wondering if o2 have disabled something to prevent me using GPS on this device this with anything other than Co-Pilot /TomTom? (I had to download a useful peice of software called NoData, to enable me turn off the GPRS connection, in order to access my work wi-fi network, as Pocket Internet Explorer was automatically connecting to gprs instead, and ignoring the cancel button, hence my suspicion!)

Thanks

Linda

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Posted

Hi Linda!

You are almost there I think! The settings of 4800Bd and COM4 are correct for the Orbit. Although the GPS is built in, it still uses a COM port for distributing the signal to applications.

It is possible that the application you are trying to use is incapable of initiating a GPS connection with inbuilt GPS. It may be worth trying the free VisualGPS or trial of GPSGate

Once a connection is established, you must go outside with a clear view of the sky to obtain a 'fix' as GPS signals are very weak, and work in line-of-sight only.

QuickGPS is an HTC program that uses cell location information from the phone to download some of the GPS data over GPRS and save time to obtain a fix. It seems that often the HTC servers are down, and the connection fails; the advantage is minimal anyway.

Nothing has been disabled in the Orbit; if one application works, they all ought to; Just need to get the 1st one working ;)

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Posted

the one I would like to use is GridHiker . I can't find any instructions for it, but the button with a sattelite dish hovering above the world seems like the button to use to get a reading!! ).

Can anyone give me any points as to what I am doing wrong? Thanks

Linda

Hi, I am author of GridHIKER.

please download the newest version of GridHIKER from my web www.birdglobe.com. You can find all information about gridhiker there (users manual too). I have made some correction in recent version of GridHIKER responding to other XDA Orbit users complains. If you have still problems mail me on address given on my web page.

All the best

Grzegorz Grzelak

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Posted

Hi, I am author of GridHIKER.

please download the newest version of GridHIKER from my web www.birdglobe.com. You can find all information about gridhiker there (users manual too). I have made some correction in recent version of GridHIKER responding to other XDA Orbit users complains. If you have still problems mail me on address given on my web page.

All the best

Grzegorz Grzelak

Thank you very much for replying Grzegorz. Sorry about the delay in replying, which was due to the fact that my pda suffered a broken screen. Fortunately o2 replaced it at no charge!! I was without amy xda orbit for a fortnight, and also on holday and and did not have my mododaco password with me! I could see that you had replied, but could not access the website to respond to your posting!

I will not have time to test out Gridhiker again till probably the weekend, but I'll try the new version, as you suggest, and it will be holpful to have a user manual! I will let you know how I get on, and if there are any problems. Meanwhile, best wishes,

Linda Floyd

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Posted

Hi Linda!

Once a connection is established, you must go outside with a clear view of the sky to obtain a 'fix' as GPS signals are very weak, and work in line-of-sight only.

Thanks for your reply Neil. Sorry about delay in replying-for reasons see my reply to other posting! I was wondering if you could clarify the technical side of this for me?? On the back of my xda orbit is a plastic molded area with gps embossed into it. The manual suggests this is the gps receiver. There are a couple of small slots just above it, with a mesh of some sort behing them, perhaps that contains a sensor or something. I'm just trying to understand the physical side of the technology, so I can be sure I'm exposing the receiver correctly!

I went outside with my orbit, and held it up, exposing this area of the pda to the sky, for a good 10 minutes. I have also tried several different programs including quickgps. None made any difference.

As you can see from the posting, the writer of Gridhiker has responded to my plea. I plan to investigate the new version of Gridhiker,this weekend, as he has tweaked it for Orbit's , it has a user manual (which will hopefully give me the correct settings) and is most suitable for my purposes.

Linda

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Posted

Thanks for your reply Neil. Sorry about delay in replying-for reasons see my reply to other posting! I was wondering if you could clarify the technical side of this for me?? On the back of my xda orbit is a plastic molded area with gps embossed into it. The manual suggests this is the gps receiver. There are a couple of small slots just above it, with a mesh of some sort behing them, perhaps that contains a sensor or something. I'm just trying to understand the physical side of the technology, so I can be sure I'm exposing the receiver correctly!

I went outside with my orbit, and held it up, exposing this area of the pda to the sky, for a good 10 minutes. I have also tried several different programs including quickgps. None made any difference.

As you can see from the posting, the writer of Gridhiker has responded to my plea. I plan to investigate the new version of Gridhiker,this weekend, as he has tweaked it for Orbit's , it has a user manual (which will hopefully give me the correct settings) and is most suitable for my purposes.

Linda

Hi Linda- shame about the Orbit screen, but good that O2 replaced it!

The GPS in the Orbit (any GPS for that matter!) receives its signals direct from the orbiting satellites, just as any radio receiver does, so it doesn't matter about pointing the Orbit in any particular direction. Its just that satellite signals are very weak, and often can't pass through walls; even heavy tree cover can interfere, as can high buildings, which is why going outside with a clear sky view is useful for a 1st fix

Satellites send out 2 types of data- Emphemara and Almanac. The former is changing data like time of day, sunrise/sunset etc and the latter gives data about the satellite's identification codes, the ID of it's neighbours etc. When you first use a GPS, it has to download all that data; Once downloaded, and assuming your positon, or time of day hasn't changed radically since the GPS was last active, a lot of the data will still be valid, and won't need redownloading.

QuickGPS is not a GPS program in itself ;) It uses the phone side of things to send a request to HTC's servers. and downloads some positional data via the Internet, based on your phone's cell position. The results are variable- it can give a faster satellite lock, but it is only a matter of a few seconds to a minute or 2.

You would be advised to use GPSInfo, a small app that HTC used to include. I'll attach it here- just copy the exe file to your Orbit, then run it by opening a file explorer, and tapping GPSInfo.exe. Set up the input for COM4 and 4800 Baud, and you should see a whole list of text scrolling in the 1st screen, as data is downloaded. The 2nd screen will give a graphic of how many satellites can be seen, and how many have a fix (outline bar= no fix; solid bar= fix). A 3D fix needs at least 3 solid bars. This process can take up to 20 minutes, so be patient!

GPSinfo.zip

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Posted

Thanks very much for clarifying that. GPS is now working on the new Orbit I downloaded the data that QuckGPS gives, installed GPSINfo and ran it for a while, watching the come and go of satellite signals(!)and then ran Gridhiker agan - and now it is giving a sensible reading!! It promises to be really useful, once I've familiarised myself with its features. I found that as well as setting Hardware off, in the Orbit settings and Baud 4800 and Com 4, I also had to tell the Orbit to open Gridhiker when I press Button 1 (the one with a satellite symbol on it) Otherwise it tries to open the messaging program. The when gridhiker opens, you press the satellite icon. At first it says No GPS Input, then HPOS > 6 (whch indicates that it has picked up enough satelite signals) and finally it gives a reading. The reading was way out at first but after the QuickGPS and GPS test stuff was done, it gave me an accurate reading!

Linda

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Posted

Glad its working !

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