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Friday, August 1, 2008

Bingo!

Link for iPhone and iTouch users here


To top the week off with some more exciting news, what you see above is a live demo of the xGPS software that xWaves is working on. Note that all credit for this awesome application goes to them!

This software does not require a live internet connection!

Here is how to get this running:
  1. I configured one of my modules at a baudrate of 19200. That is the baudrate the xGPS program currently runs at. Hopefully they will add in an option to custom set the baudrate the program uses for the serial port in the next version. So you will need to have a GPS module with the correct baudrate settings, otherwise it won't work. Plug your GPS module into the dock.

  2. Go to the Installer.app on your iPhone or iPod touch and add in http://irepo.xwaves.net under the sources. Refresh the sources and then go to the Install menu and scroll down to Xwaves and install xGPS (the version I am running is 1.0p1). Quit Installer.

  3. Start up the xGPS software and hit Maps. You'll end up somewhere in France. Zoom out with the small magnifier glass and move the map to your local area, then zoom back in again with the large magnifier glass.

  4. Now drag with two fingers a red box for the map area that you want to download and hit the Download button. This will take a while depending on how large the map is. Make sure auto-lock on your iPhone/iPod touch is set to never and that you have enough battery left. I suggest downloading a small map area the first time (< 20mb). Cancel to go back to the main screen. The map is located in /private/var/root/Library/xGPS_map.db.

  5. Then hit Enable GPS and voila, your GPS should be working! A pin will drop on your current location.

  6. Take your phone, get into your car and have fun!
As this is still a very early version of the software, it is a little bit buggy when it comes to zooming in and out (double tap with one finger is zoom-in, double tap with two fingers is zoom-out). Also, the voice navigation is not working yet, although I did get it to display the purple-line directions on the map occasionally and the program spoke the first navigation direction out loud.

It looks like things are coming along very well in having a complete GPS navigation solution available.

So make sure up to sign up for one of the iGPS360 modules. The first production run will start very soon and will be a quantity of 1000 units. Make sure you are among the first 1000 to sign up!

27 comments:

zhou said...

One important question about your gps module: Does it have a loudspeaker with it? I have a ipod touch and I think GPS with voice is much more attractive.

Anonymous said...

is this also compatible with 2.0?

for iphone users they have a speaker ... the touch ones .... euhm yeaah little problem héhé or you will have to connect some

Anonymous said...

Is it compatible with my 2.0 phone?

J D said...

I don't see any reason this wouldn't work on jailbroken 2.0 phones. PmgR, can you confirm/deny?

zhou, where exactly would he have room for a loudspeaker on that tiny board? o_O

Just connect a speaker or headphones to the touch's headphone port.

Vincent said...

@j_d: The problem with 2.0 compatibility could be of 2 sort :
- Installer isn't yet available for 2.0 (could be installed with Cydia ir SSH thou)
- Applications developped for 1.1.4 must be recompiled/adapted for 2.0

Personnally, I don't think it will be a big problem, just a matter of time.

Anonymous said...

i´m a german and want to use gps with my iphone 1.1.3.
can i use it also, what did i need for and where i get it?
thx boe

ian said...

I think the map is okay.. looks good.. but i guess using the IPOD Touch for driving would require to use with the Headphones.. not sure if that is safe or not..

My concern is how good is that software.. i prefer the previous version look and feel.. especially with those Satelite lock on .. hehehe.. looks a bit more cooler.. than this one..

well.. again.. I know you have created a great product, but it would be nice to have a great software to go with it as well.. and your recommendation is always regarded highly.

Pls. help as much as you can to deliver a software to go with it too..

Thanks.. awaiting the product sale now..

thestrangestick said...

You failed to mention that xgps are already selling GPS modules for the iPhone and iTouch. Granted they don't look as nice, but they are for sale!

Anonymous said...

the igps360 project is light years ahead than xgps!

ian said...

agreed.. the igps360 looks and feel much better than the xgps, and i am sure the final spec is much better as well.. in my opinion the most important thing about the gps is the efficiency of the power use and its sensitivity to lock on to the satelite..

we don't want a GPS that drains the battery power and neither do we want a unit that takes more than the required time to get a lock-on ..

I dunno,.. i might be wrong here.. :p but i still like the igps360 look. i still want a great software that goes with it though..

Anonymous said...

More of a software question assuming it speaks directions...Would I be able to hear directions speak over any music playing at the same time if I am listening to my iPod in the car's stereo system?

GPS said...

@zhou: please read some of the older posts. This issue has been discussed before. For your iPod/iPhone, you can hookup your headphones, speaker or an FM transmitter to the headphone jack and listen on your car radio.

@anonymous: the hardware is not dependent on the firmware version. As long as a firmware can be jailbreaked, serial port enabled, and software is ported to that firmware version, there should not be any problem using the module.

@j.d.: see my comment above. I will upgrade one of my phones to 2.0 once I have more time to show proof of concept.

@vincent: good two points and as you said not really an issue; the software and installer just need to be ported to 2.0 (I think installer 4 will be working on 2.0)

@german anonymous: it already works on 1.1.3. You need the hardware module for which you can sign up here and software (see my other postings).

@ian: for the iPod touch, you could always plug-in an FM transmitter (or if you have an aux input/tape player use that) and play sound through your car radio/aux/cassette player. Do a google search and you will find some very cheap FM transmitters. I personally have a tape player that I use to play my iPhone through. For software, there are different options out there already (xGPS, Roadmap, Hike). The 3D look of Roadmap is nice and the fact that xGPS uses Google maps is nice. Once I get more time, I will probably start working on a software solution myself as well that combines Google maps with 3D views, compass, satellite view, etc.

@thestrangestick: xGPS is indeed selling, but if you check there website carefully, the are not shipping yet. There is a 3 week expedition time (probably production time) and it depends on how many orders they get. I am working very hard on getting production started and expect to have the first modules by mid/end September. I will give more details on production progress in a separate post.

@anonymous: thanks for the compliment

@ian: two good points: I have minimized power consumption as much as possible (not sacrificing performance) and the module will consume ~35mA when tracking. Typical open sky TTFF is about 30sec from a cold start and a few seconds from a hot start. Of course note that the current consumption and TTFF can vary depending on where you are (your car, outside, forest, etc) and your surroundings and how strong the GPS satellite signal is at your location.

@anonymous: yes, I just tried it out in the xGPS software: it speaks simultaneously while playing a song.

ian said...

thanks for clarifying all the points made.. and i am definitely getting one from you.. and i would also definitely like the software that you might/will be building it on, as you know what we want.. you already tested some of the software out there, and you know what features should be in.. and i am sure the software that you build would be better than the rest.

Keep it up..

J D said...

Great stuff. We're rooting for ya :D

esales said...

Everything looks good. I am unable to sign up button, http://www.orangegadgets.com/ is down. Also important recommendation is you make a iPhone holder for Windshield/Dashboard, because we need to stick this in our car, Also another upgrade is to add a FM transmitter to the GPS module so that the voice guidance can be heard on the car radio. I think you can check with iPod FM/Car Dock transmitter from a Chinese vendor, if not you seem to good at your own design. Please sign me up for the GPS module.

ian said...

@esales - the signup button works... if you are using IE, you might face a Certificate error, if you do, just click Continue on the option in the page itself..

J D said...

Why do people keep suggesting that PmgR re-implement audio hardware on the GPS device when the iPod touch and iPhone both have their own audio hardware? Am I missing something here?

hdd123 said...

I was wanting to try the xGPS software but although the repo link is provided (see xWaves.net) it is not available to you if your running 2.0 and above due to lack of Installer. I sent an email to xWaves to inquire about access to their repo under new firmware and Cydia - their response is attached.

Hi,

The current version of the app is only for 1.1.4 firmware and it is only
available on the Installer v3 repository. Version for firmware 2.0 will
be released in about 2 weeks.

Mathieu

So there it is, we all just need to be wait a little longer!

ian said...

ok.. its been 6 days since the last update... hehehe.. can't wait..

Any updates on how many orders you have received so far..?

bast said...

Will you consider creating a 3G module ?

ben said...

I just wanted to know what the price for this GPS module will be. I could not find any information on your website. And since you only want people to sign in that will really buy one I'd really like to have a idea of the expected price range.

Keep up the great work

J D said...

@bast: there appears to be no reason the iGPS360 shouldn't work with 2.0 software. The serial port interface still works fine if the device is jailbroken.

GPS said...

@esales: it looks like you were able to sign up. I am already looking into windshield holders. The dash vent holder that is shown in the video is not that easy to use and I would recommend something a little stronger. Note that you can buy online very cheap (<$20) FM transmitters that plug into the headphone jack. It is not worth designing one myself. I can look into bulk importing transmitters.

@ian: correct, regarding the certificate error, just ignore it. It comes from my web provider and is legitimate.

@jd: see my comment above. And if you have a cassette player or aux-in in your radio, you can directly plug a cable between there and the headphone jack.

@ian: things have been extremely busy this week, hence no update yet... it will come soon.

@bast: you can use the same module with your 3G iPhone as long as the phone is jailbreaked.

@ben: as we are coming close to production start (some pieces have already started), the price has converged as well. The module will sell for $75 + shipping and this includes a 6ft USB cable.

@j.d.: correct. I haven't had a chance to upgrade one of my phones to 2.0 due to lack of time, but if you can jailbreak the phone, you should be able to access the serial port by software. I hope to get to upgrading a phone sometime soon too to confirm.

kdol5 said...

I had a couple of ideas for future Orange products, however, it appears that the FM modulator has already been mentioned.

Another thought came this morning as I was trying to take a picture of a hummingbird at my feeder. How about hardware or software that would use the remote command from my bluetooth ear bud to activate the shutter of the iphone camera? I've not looked for anything like this on line but it sounded pretty cool and do-able to me.

J D said...

@kdol5: That would require kernel extension programming. I don't know what the current state of the ability or lack thereof of that is; it used to be impossible but since the release of saurik's new non-llvm toolchain I think we may be within reach of it now. That said I don't know of ANYONE who is working on kext programming; I'd think the first thing people would do if they were trying it would be something like porting bluez to "un-cripple" the iPhone's Bluetooth transceiver.

Anonymous said...

Hey!

I downloaded the xGPS software from Installer just to see how it looked. I'm having a problem though in that it doesn't show any maps...I thought it was supposed to start off in France, but all it shows is a bunch of white and gray squares. Anybody know what to do? Thanks in advance, and yes, I'm connected to wifi. I'm using an ipod touch, is that the problem?

Anonymous said...

Forgot to mention my Version: 1.14