GPS and airplane mode

Discussion in 'Android General Discussions' started by vdefender, Sep 5, 2010.

  1. vdefender
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    vdefender New Member

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    Ok, I've been trying to figure this one out:

    I like to use the GPS on my droid a lot. Often times I am using it on long hikes where I do not have service. I wan't to be able to turn off the cell service without turning off the GPS. When I put the phone into "airplane mode" it turns off all radio communications, including the GPS receiver. Is there another option somewhere else that will only turn off the cell service?
  2. fiver643
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    fiver643 New Member

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    if you dont want to be bothered, then just turn the ringer off. send them straight to vm. i my be wrong but, i would think you need your cell service to provide you with gps.
  3. vdefender
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    vdefender New Member

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    Cell service is not required for GPS use. Where I hike there is no cell service at all. I am just trying to make my battery last longer by stopping the phone from actively searching for cell service that I already know isn't there.
  4. RW-1
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    RW-1 New Member

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    You dont need cell to receive a GPS signal from the satellite.

    Whether or not you can get the GPS signal in airplane mode is the question.
  5. Backnblack
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    Backnblack Premium Member Premium Member

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    Turn on Airplane Mode, then Turn on GPS.

    It's true that you don't need cell service to use GPS, but you do need data for maps,,,,unless you already have that covered.
  6. vdefender
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    vdefender New Member

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    Correct. It just takes a little longer to lock onto the satellites without the assistance from the cell service (assistedGPS aka aGPS).

    I have not read anywhere that airplane mode specifically turns off the GPS, but in my experience, every time I put my phone into airplane mode I lose my GPS signal.

    So the real question is: Is it possible to turn off the cell service without putting it into "airplane mode"
  7. vdefender
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    vdefender New Member

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    Good idea, but it didn't work :(

    I always leave my GPS turned on. So in order to follow your instructions I turned off the GPS using the power control widget. Then I put the phone into airplane mode. Then I turned the GPS back on using the power control widget.

    What I noticed is that the GPS icon in the tray always shows up when an application is requesting your location, even when in airplane mode. But this doesn't mean the GPS hardware is turned on and providing that data. What it seems like to me is that by putting the phone into airplane mode, the hardware is actually turning off power to all of the radio based services (gps, bluetooth, wifi, cell service)

    I am using a 3rd party app for maps. So yes I do not require cell service.


    The issue isn't about whether or not I can use my GPS with no service, because I can and I do all the time. I just wish I could stop my phone from searching for service that isn't there to save battery.
  8. fiver643
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    fiver643 New Member

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    maybe you can find a app developer on here that can make a app like that. i bet it would come in handy for a lot of people that are in more rural areas.
  9. nlinecomputers
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    nlinecomputers New Member

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    Quick Settings aoo or the Power widget that comes with droid will let you turn back on the GPS while everything else is on airplane mode. I think Beautiful Widgets also has a GPS toggle widget.
  10. vdefender
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    vdefender New Member

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    Unfortunately it appears that all the widget does is toggle wether or not applications can access the GPS. It doesn't actually turn on or off the GPS chip. The widget can say that GPS is on, and the application can attempt to get a location from it, but if the phone is in airplane mode the GPS chip is physically turned off.
  11. hiker_jon
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    hiker_jon New Member

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    If I put it into Airplane Mode then I cannot turn on GPS, but if I turn on GPS first (before Airplane Mode) then it remains on in Airplane Mode.
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