I read this piece of YKW* and immediately wondered who her source was, and why she wrote it. It's clearly not in her subject expertise.
The FCC has imposed location requirements on the carriers, and that costs them money. They can not now depend on GPS for several reasons:
a) It does not always work indoors.
b) It does not provide the PSAP with the floor or room.
c) Being a significant power drain, users often have GPS turned off. (Is there anyone out there saying "My phone lasts too long without a charge"?)
d) User may want it off, given the propensity of the carriers to exploit location data for their purposes; i.e. sell users locations to advertisers.
e) Not all phones have GPS. Can you think of a flip phone or candy bar phone that does?
So my first guess is a carrier lobbyist sold the reporter on it. If only they could depend on user's GPS, they don't need expensive timing methods. And if it fails, shrug.. "We tried!"
My second guess was it was the FBI. We know how they feel about anyone doing something on a phone without their knowing all about it. (Just ask Tim Cook!)
Could this be the precursor for mandatory GPS use? Or a "fix" so the FBI can enable your GPS remotely? Donno...***** Moderator's Note *****
- In this context, I think "YKW" means "You Know What."
I didn't know that the GPS in a cell phone could be disabled. When did that start? Who can do it?
Why do you say "It does not provide the PSAP with the floor or room?" I though GPS could repost altitude, and that "GPS-enabled smartphones are typically accurate to within a 4.9 m (16 ft.) radius under open sky."(1) Isn't that enough to get to a single floor in one building?
Bill Horne Moderator