While there is little doubt that GPS will enable many, many new mobile applications such as keeping track of your kids or finding the nearest Starbucks, its implementation has been slow.
Part of this is the added cost to achieve adequate performance. By that I mean being able to use the GPS inside a building and getting a fix in less than eight seconds.
In some instances, chipmakers have touted $7 as the add-on (including hardware and software but not the antenna). This figure might drop to $5 over time as volume ramps. But this really is a significant percentage of today's EBOM for a cell phone.
That's why CSR's (Cambridge Software Radio Ltd.) recent acquisition of two GPS companies is so interesting. The not unlikely result is a GPS solution that does virtually all the GPS function in software and (if all goes as planned) will result in GPS for an additional dollar.
Trials on the integration are underway now. When will we know if they are successful? By summer of this year from what I hear.