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Your Child’s GPS Tracker displaying an inaccurate location? Read this now:

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Your Child’s GPS Tracker displaying an inaccurate location? Read this now:

The Global Positioning System (GPS) is a fantastic technology for locating or finding the position of objects, people and more. It’s accuracy is unparalleled and can pinpoint objects to within a couple of metres very reliably. Unfortunately, most systems have certain limitations and GPS is no exception. In order to take advantage of the GPS network, there must be a direct ‘line of site’ between your GPS device and the sky, in order for a device to triangulate its position using the network.

This means that GPS technology is not suitable for use indoors. True, it can work indoors occasionally if the device is in proximity to a window, (thus allowing line of site to the GPS satellites orbiting the earth) but generally speaking it is not a reliable technology for indoor use. This is the case for ALL GPS devices as the limitation is derived from the GPS network and not the device triangulating by use to the system.

Due to this limitation of GPS, many GPS devices include alternative positioning technologies that kick in when the GPS network is unavailable to communicate with the device. Lil Tracker incorporates two of these: WiFi positioning and LBS positioning.

These technologies use radio waves and either cell phone towers or WiFi hotspots to estimate the device’s position.

The advantage of these secondary technologies is their radio waves can travel through walls and ceilings, so they are reliable indoors (anywhere there is a cell phone signal). The disadvantage is the positioning is much less accurate: whereas GPS is accurate to within a few metres, WiFi positioning has an accuracy range of 10-200 metres and LBS only to within 100 to 1000 metres (depending on the density of cell phone towers in the vicinity).

So how will you know if the position you are seeing is an accurate location using GPS technology, or more of an estimate using one of the secondary technologies? Our app informs you. On the in app map, you’ll see an address in a bubble and directly above the address, the app will display either GPS,  WiFi or LBS. This way, you’ll always know if the position is an accurate GPS triangulated position, or an estimate using one of the other technologies.

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