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Old 26th Sep 2011, 09:43   #1 (permalink)
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Join Date: Sep 2002
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iPad 2 + GPS locationing

Why doesn't my iPad 2 give me a position in flight via GPS?

I work in a large airliner, usually crusing 35000'. Am I moving too fast or the glass to thick or what? Its position seems to be stuck at whichever location I departed from.

I move the ipad all the way out onto the glareshield and nothing happens.
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Old 26th Sep 2011, 14:43   #2 (permalink)
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Mine works fine (even in the cabin) however for better signal I bought thr bad elf external GPS. What type are you flying? I did hear that on the 777 the windshield heat was causing problems with the signal.
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Old 26th Sep 2011, 15:46   #3 (permalink)
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From the sideline:
In the DHC8-Q400 *no* handheld GPS device works on the flight deck. Ever! Handheld GPS receiver of brand X, Y and Z, iPad, iPhone ... you name it, it doesn't work. No signals received, indicating ...

1) something in the flight deck windows sufficiently attenuating the signals from the outside world
- and/or -
2) too much RF noise inside the flight deck, coincidentially blocking the GPS RX frequencies

Could be interesting to know which of the two is the major cause.
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Old 26th Sep 2011, 16:07   #4 (permalink)
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Probably both the fact that the weak GPS signals are sheilded by the airframe and also the GPS receivers in most mobile devices rely on AGPS (Assisted GPS) which rely on triangualting the 3G phone signals to help them fix their position.
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Old 26th Sep 2011, 16:40   #5 (permalink)
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AGPS just means they download the almanac via a mobile connection, however they do work fine outside of mobile coverage, just need up to a few minutes until they get their first fix. However, in iOS devices the GPS is part of the mobile chipset and therefore can only work if flight mode is off, something that is not recommended on board of most airlines.

And yes, the field of view form a flight deck is pretty small while the window heat shields most of the weak GPS signals. Dedicated GPS units work most of the time with reduced precision and mobile phone/iOS units sometimes work but not really great.
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Old 26th Sep 2011, 19:06   #6 (permalink)
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I must say Denti, once my bad elf gps has locked on.... It works very well even moving about in the cabin on the 777 etc
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Old 27th Sep 2011, 14:47   #7 (permalink)
Join Date: Jan 2011
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wifi or 3g model?

As mentioned above about assisted GPS - the wifi only model only has assisted GPS which relys on triagulating you position via wifi points etc.

If you are using 3G version then see from Apple Website itself - Google is your friend.

"Additional Information
Location Services, including GPS, do not work while in airplane mode. You can use applications like Maps by re-enabling Wi-Fi while in airplane mode, but you will be unable to determine your position using Location Services."

Regardless you should have the device in airplane mode so it won't work regardless.

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Old 5th Oct 2011, 13:52   #8 (permalink)
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FWIW, the Garmin 500 Aera works fine in the bus, no additional antennas needed, stuck to the side window.
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