Smartphone GPS Tracking Help

 

Throughout this discussion consider that there is a basic difference between mobile phone GPS Tracking and Navigation. GPS cell phone tracking is usually related to someone keeping records of either real-time or historical cell phone position, while Navigation deals with the handset user figuring out how to get from point A to point B. Just because a smartphone has GPS doesn?t mean that it can necessarily be used as a navigation device. Just like mobile phone tracking, navigation requires third-party software.

 Locate Cell Phone

A lot of the discussion dealing with cell tracking, mobile GPS and cell phone tracker software could be helped by a GPS Satellite primer.

GPS satellites broadcast signals from space that GPS receivers utilize to provide three-dimensional location (latitude, longitude, and altitude) plus precise time. GPS stands for Global Positioning System and is a network that is composed of 3 main segments: Space Segment, Control Segment and User Segment.

The GPS Space Segment incorporates twenty-four to thirty-two satellites that orbit the earth in medium earth orbit MEO. These satellites are referred to as the GPS Constellation, and they are orbiting once every 12 hours. They are not parked over one spot, they travel at over 7,000 mph. GPS satellites are solar powered but have battery reserve for when they are on the dark side of the earth. They are placed so that there are at least 4 satellites ?visible? from any point on earth. Small rocket boosters on each satellite keep them properly positioned. The satellites have a lifetime of about 10 years until all their fuel is exhausted.

GPS Satellites are not communications satellites. Geostationary or communications satellites are at a much higher orbit of about 22,300 miles above the equator. These satellites are used for weather forecasting, satellite TV, satellite radio and most other types of global communications. At exactly 22,000 miles above the equator, the earth’s gravitational force and centrifugal forces are offset and are in equilibrium. This is the ideal location to place a communications satellite. The earth rotates at about 1,000 miles an hour, and because of their high earth orbit the earth-synchronous satellites need to travel at about 7,000 mph to keep position. This is just about the same speed as GPS satellites, but since communications satellites are 10,000 miles further away they stay in place relative to the earth.

The GPS Control Segment includes Master Control Station, an Alternate Master Control Station, and numerous dedicated and shared Ground Antennas and Monitor Stations that work together to make sure the satellites are working to specification and the information they beam down to earth is accurate.

The GPS User Segment includes of GPS receivers taking the shape of handsets and , laptops, in-car navigation devices and hand-held tracking units along with the people that use them, and the software programs that make them work.

GPS receivers sometimes take a long time to become ready to use after it’s turned on because it must acquire some basic information in addition to finding GPS satellite signals. This delay is sometimes caused when the GPS smartphone has been unused for days or weeks, or has been moved a significant distance while turned off for. The GPS must update its almanac and ephemeris data and store it in memory. The GPS almanac is a set of data that every GPS satellite transmits. When a GPS receiver has current almanac data in memory, it can capture signals and compute initial position more quickly.

When satellite signals are not available, or precision is less important than battery life, using Cell-ID is a viable alternative to GPS mobile phone tracking. The position of the device can be determined by the cell network cell id, which identifies the cell tower the mobile phone is connected to. By understanding the position of the tower, you’ll be able to know roughly the spot where the device is. Nonetheless, a tower can cover an enormous area, from a couple of hundred meters, in high populationdensity areas, to several miles in lower density zones. This is why location CellID accuracy is less than than GPS accuracy. Even so location from CellID still offers quite a useful alternative.