GPS technology is far from new and is getting cheaper. The result of this drive to low cost is that GPS is finding its way into a higher percentage of handsets.
Global positioning system (GPS) technology is far from new. Lately, the cost of implementation for GPS has come down considerably (see This GPS works, but not for long and There's no such thing as a free lunch (or GPS in this case). The result of this drive to low cost is that GPS is finding its way into a much higher percentage of handsets.
One vendor looking to capitalize on the potential of GPS is GloNav, a fabless semiconductor vendor that recently announced what it is calling the "lowest power, highest sensitivity, and fastest time-to-first-fix (TTFF)" GPS solution. The company is so confident, that it claims it will ship in more than 5 million wireless handsets and mobile devices this year.
As a relatively new company, GloNav spun out from Ceva Inc. and the acquisition of RFDomus Inc. The combined technology from these two vendors results in the GloNav offering. The company's DSP-based receiver includes embedded and host-based satellite acquisition and navigation software developed specifically for assisted-GPS applications on cellular networks and optimized to provide high levels of accuracy in indoor and outdoor environments.
While I believe that GPS is important technology for the handset market, I'm just not convinced that there's money to be made there. As you see from what Qualcomm is doing (see link above), they're using GPS as a loss-leader to sell for chip sets. And it's a strategy that seems to be working.