How is structured in Android GPS


All our Android phones have GPS. Yes, that thing that allows geolocalizarnos accurately. But really, how the heck does it work? Today we raise a little the difficulty level and spend a few minutes to understand the structure and architecture of the GPS. Although it sounds complicated, it is not so.

GPS Architecture


header image, we can detect five key components:

GPS Chip


  • Driver
  • GL Engine
  • Android

  • Framework
  • User Applications
  • GPS Chip

    is a radio frequency receiver that communicates directly with GPS satellites. For more details about the information that is transmitted or how this component, you can take a look at here or here .

    GPS Driver

    Driver uses GPS target=”_blank”> from low level to communicate with the Chip GPS. Is simply a series of files located in / System / lib / hw or / vendor / lib / hw and usually begin with the prefix GPS * and ending with the suffix * SO depending on the version of Android (examples: or )

    GL Engine

    The heart of the matter. It consists of an address or path (/ system / bin) followed by names like glgps or gpsd . It works using configuration parameters consist. Xml files or. Conf (glconfig.xml, gps.xml, gpsconfig.xlm, gps.conf). All of these names again depend on the version of Android and usually found in (/ system / etc / system / etc / gps or / vendor / etc).

    Depending on the configuration and the platform. The GL Engine takes the Information Location from mobile towers and read the NVRAM (where data is stored in the GPS lock). NVRAM information is basically in / data / gps in files ending in. Sto y. Dat (eg gldata.sto, lto.dat, xtra.bin, epo.dat).

    Using all this information, the GL attends GPS Engine Driver : basically is able to detect multiple GPS satellites to the GPS is scheduled to Driver, but to fix the position requires information can be downloaded from the same GPS satellites (slower) or you can access the Internet to use the SUPL servers / NTP (high speed). Then save all data in NVRAM for future use.

    Android or Location Services Framework

    It is a series of classes such as the Location Manager , who provide services for an application to use the GL Engine. It is a kind of bridge between the application and the GL Engine. here a little more info about it.

    User Applications

    Any application that uses GPS. Google Maps, Navigation, Sygic, etc. ..

    improves the speed of your GPS with GPS Fix

     GPSTest  gpsstatus

    With all we have seen this in mind, let’s see how all applications / solutions that improve the performance of your GPS such as GPS Status , GPS Test , and other GPS Doctor. Basically, what these applications are two things:

    Download XTRA data (lto.dat, xtra.bin, epo.dat, gldata.sto, etc …)

  • Modify the GPS.conf (Requires root permissions)
  • Google , but often, when changing ROM or X reason, are unable to use it due to invalid or expired certificates. The Google server rejects it and therefore never fixed position.

    One possible solution is to change the SUPL server by Nokia ( 7275). To do just that you should follow these instructions .

    Now you know how the GPS in your Android. I hope it was interesting.

    Via XDA

    Article How is structured GPS Android was published in The Android Free (The Android Blog reference. Apps, news, Free Android Games and smartphones)

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    The Android Free

    How is structured in Android GPS
    Source: english  
    December 31, 2012

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