Satellite positioning is changing how we move

05 February 2019
Satellite navigation is underpinning a revolution in mobility.
Satellite navigation is underpinning a revolution in mobility.

Mobility is changing. The way people and goods move on our roads is going through its biggest transformation in decades, driven by technology, connectivity and satellite positioning. A new video from the GSA - European GNSS for Smart Mobility - explores how Europe’s flagship satellite navigation programmes EGNOS and Galileo are at the heart of this transformation, making positioning more accurate, available and reliable.

Thanks to satellite navigation, cars, busses, trucks and even bicycles can communicate exactly where they are, and people with mobile phones are able to pinpoint their precise location and communicate with their preferred mode of transport. These advances are opening up new possibilities in road transport and changing the face of mobility.

The power of positioning

“We see that connectivity of people and connectivity of vehicles is so important when it comes to the efficiency of transport. Therefore the more accurate the positioning, the better services you can give to the users. That is why positioning is becoming more and more important,” said Jacob Bangsgaard, CEO of ERTICO-ITS Europe, a public-private partnership that develops, promotes and deploys Intelligent Transport Systems and Services (ITS).

Read this: Galileo is critical for autonomous driving

New mobile apps that match supply and demand and offer different transport modes are increasingly commonplace in urban life and Mobility as a Service (MaaS) provides access to a variety of transport services using a single front-end app. What’s more, the Internet of Things, where freight is equipped with location devices, allows for more efficient and innovative multi-modal transport, optimised routes and shared resources.

“Increasingly businesses and users want direct connection to the Internet and location. It is necessary to have devices mounted on many things, so whether this is bicycles or trailers on trucks, you need a very robust, low-power approach,” said Steve Beck, General Manager, Telecommunications R&D Group at Sony Europe.

Safer roads

The eCall emergency response system, mandated for all new car and light van models sold in the EU since 31 March 2018, leverages Galileo signals to alert emergency services in the event of an accident and provide them with an accurate location.

“Satellite positioning is already standard for today’s car navigation systems, and enables safety systems such as eCall in the case of an emergency or an accident and allows car-to-car or car-to-infrastructure communication,” said Steffi Lang from engineering and electronics multinational Bosch. “Looking to the future – for highly automated driving we need to have a robust, safe and precise localisation, and satellite navigation is a main contributor to this.”

And this: Introducing the MyGalileoApp Competition

The high level of integrity offered by Galileo also powers a range of innovative solutions, including pay-as-you-drive schemes for insurance premiums or road taxes. Public transport is also leveraging location information to further improve its services.

“For us as a semiconductor company, having Galileo and other signals really allows us to open markets that were not really possible before,” said Luis Serrano, Technical Marketing Manager ADAS & GNSS at STMicroelectronics.

As technology evolves and positioning becomes more robust, vehicles will become ever more autonomous and connected. This will increase safety and fundamentally change the way we move. Fully personalised unique journey planning and management models will identify the best transport option for users through a smart combination of public transport and vehicle renting or sharing, based on their travel needs. Accurate and reliable location is at the core of this new transport paradigm.

Media note: This feature can be republished without charge provided the European GNSS Agency (GSA) is acknowledged as the source at the top or the bottom of the story. You must request permission before you use any of the photographs on the site. If you republish, we would be grateful if you could link back to the GSA website (

Updated: Feb 06, 2019



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