Following the recent release of GNSS raw measurements on Android Nougat, the European GNSS Agency (GSA) is engaging with the smartest brains in navigation and positioning to innovate around this new feature.
Galileo is now successfully delivering initial positioning services, while device manufacturers have unveiled the first generation of Galileo-ready consumer devices. Therefore, the GSA is now focusing more on its work with application developers to allow EU citizens to benefit from this enhanced Galileo performance.
An interesting development that may enable higher accuracy for mass market devices is the new availability of raw measurements at the Operating System level. Indeed, all new smartphones that feature Android 7.0 (i.e. Nougat) give application developers direct access to raw GNSS measurements. This unique feature allows users to get pseudoranges and Doppler and carrier phase measurements, and opens up the possibility of using alternative strategies for position, velocity and time (PVT) computation, for example by applying corrections to improve accuracy.
This innovation was eagerly anticipated by the GNSS community. Raw measurements were already accessible on high end professional equipment but never on smartphones. Research centres and universities have immediately started testing the new possibilities that the availability of raw measurements may bring. Just a few months after the Nougat launch, several applications appeared on the market proposing precise point positioning (PPP) solutions for smartphones.
However, the use of raw measurements is currently still limited to testing and users are mostly GNSS experts that are trying to better understand the real potential of this new feature. Therefore, the GSA has decided to launch a Raw Measurements Task Force to facilitate exchanges, share experience and knowledge around this topic, and promote the use of raw measurements to application developers. The Task Force plans to release a White Paper explaining how GNSS raw measurements can be used to optimise the calculation of position (building on test results), how they can be best corrected, and how they can create opportunities for innovative applications. It will also provide an outlook on the future use of raw measurements, assuming that dual band chipsets become available in smartphones.
The GSA is inviting all interested GNSS experts in academia and research to join a dedicated workshop in Prague on July 20th on the preparation of the GNSS community’s position on raw measurement use in consumer devices.
To register for the one day workshop, or to get more information about the Task Force, please contact Justyna Redelkiewicz at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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