A-GPS Service Enhances Nokia Mobile Phone-Based Navigation

A new service from handset maker Nokia reduces the time it takes for its cell phone-based GPS navigation systems to determine the starting locations of users and increases the navigation experience by getting users to their destinations in less time, according to the company.

Nokia phone-based navigation systems employ the Nokia Maps application for geographical data.

The Assisted GPS (A-GPS) service is currently available on the Nokia 6110 Navigator and the Nokia N95 smartphone, according to a press release. The company hopes to equip its full lineup of mobile devices with GPS with the new service, and current N95 owners can update their firmware to include A-GPS via the Nokia Software Updater.

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The time it takes a GPS service to determine a user's starting location is called "time to first fix," according to Nokia, and A-GPS reduces this time for an improved navigation experience.

"By decreasing the time wasted while you wait for a first fix, we are increasing the enjoyment that Nokia Maps provides," said Ralph Eric Kunz, Nokia's vice president of multimedia experiences, in the release.

Third-party service providers, like cell phone carriers, also have the option of incorporating their own regional A-GPS services via a technical framework that works in tandem with Nokia's service, "making fix times even faster in certain areas."

A-GPS operates via users' cellular data networks, and data transfer fees vary based on service provider.

In related news, CIO.com recently reviewed the Nokia E62 smartphone, which includes built-in GPS.

More information about Nokia Maps is available on the company's website.

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