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Problems with GPS: Myth or fact?

OP dunderball

4th January 2013, 05:14 PM   |  #1  
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I notice that some people have reported their S3's to receive poor GPS signal or that their phones can not lock onto a location at all, even to the point of having to return their phones. This paranoia had also struck me, and I noticed that I began to have problems too. However, I realized that at some point (for me personally) it had nothing to do with the phone. I just wanted to provide some tips as to how to improve GPS or use it more properly.

1. You need a line of sight to the satellites from your phone. That means that being in the middle of midtown Manhattan, you're likely to not get a signal. That also means that if you're in the middle of your living room, don't also expect to magically receive a GPS lock. It just doesn't work that way.

2. While it's controversial whether or not bad weather affects GPS signals, I notice that heavy clouds and poor weather affects my phone's ability to lock on at all.

3. If you're in an area where you can't get a lock (i.e. Midtown Manhattan, etc), turn on Google Location Services. This will always put you within a 500-1000 meter radius of where you are (in which case you would just read a map the old fashioned way).

4. I almost never have a problem locking on a location within 5 seconds while driving on a clear day, outside of the city. If your GPS and Google Navigation still does not work in this situation, you probably really have an issue.

5. During my paranoia, I cleared cache/data for Google Framework Services (warning: this will remove your sync account) and uninstalled updates to Maps and reinstalled. That may help if you've been flashing back and forth between roms.

Hope these simple tips might help some people out.
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4th January 2013, 10:40 PM   |  #2  
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I don't know if it's because I leave GPS and Location services on all the time but I've never had an issue with GPS lock with this phone whether I'm in the burbs or in a city.
4th January 2013, 11:06 PM   |  #3  
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Yesterday I was in open line of site in Fitchburg MA, I had the GPS on for 20 minutes as I was scrambling for and event. It just would not lock at all. When I do get a lock. Yesterday same day driving 2 hours to Cape Cod (105 miles of open space) it would lock work good for a couple minutes then lag for a few seconds to minutes and not move then just jump and update. (Says GPS signal lost.) Sometimes it would then put me on side streets and struggle for find that I was still on 495 South. It did this when whole way. I knew where I was going so it wasn't a problem but there is something up and I am interested in finding out what. BTW this started after the first OTA update from Verizon.
4th January 2013, 11:23 PM   |  #4  
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If you have problems with gps get a replacement phone.

Sent from my SCH-I535 using xda premium
5th January 2013, 12:55 AM   |  #5  
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A lot of people don't know is to turn on wifi first. You will get a lock on in seconds.

Sent from my SCH-I535 using Tapatalk 2
5th January 2013, 02:02 AM   |  #6  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by loonie01

A lot of people don't know is to turn on wifi first. You will get a lock on in seconds.

Sent from my SCH-I535 using Tapatalk 2

Tough to sign onto wifi on the highway
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5th January 2013, 02:35 AM   |  #7  
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Even when I was in line of sight and with wifi on. My s3 wouldn't get a gps signal or lock on. My wife's Rezound did. So, I called Verizon and they sent me a replacement and now everything is fine. It was the hardware in my first one that was the problem.

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5th January 2013, 11:30 PM   |  #8  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boss428man

Yesterday I was in open line of site in Fitchburg MA, I had the GPS on for 20 minutes as I was scrambling for and event. It just would not lock at all. When I do get a lock. Yesterday same day driving 2 hours to Cape Cod (105 miles of open space) it would lock work good for a couple minutes then lag for a few seconds to minutes and not move then just jump and update. (Says GPS signal lost.) Sometimes it would then put me on side streets and struggle for find that I was still on 495 South. It did this when whole way. I knew where I was going so it wasn't a problem but there is something up and I am interested in finding out what. BTW this started after the first OTA update from Verizon.

Exact same issue with me. I haven't tried it bout lately because it pissed me off. I started using GPS status and toolbox and beginning to calibrate and update things. Hopefully its better now. Unfortunately, I cant get a replacement because I bought the phone off contract on eBay (just like I always do).
6th January 2013, 01:23 AM   |  #9  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boss428man

Tough to sign onto wifi on the highway

You don't have to. For some reason enabling WiFi alone will improve the GPS's ability to get a lock. Though this isn't always the case, its one of the first things I do when I have trouble getting a lock.

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6th January 2013, 02:51 AM   |  #10  
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Yeah I don't understand it also but when I flash a new ROM, I would go to google maps. At that time I would not get a GPS lock until I turn on Wifi. GPS status app also helps with a good GPS lock.

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