India’s NavIC system and its effect on IOT-based location services

India’s first indigenously built GPS constellation NavIC recently received international approval from 3GPP (3rd Generation Partnership Project) and will soon make its way into our mobile phones and GPS devices. The GPS constellation launched by ISRO was initially tested with the help of local fishermen in Kerala. According to ISRO chief K Sivan, NavIC is working perfectly and is stable, some app-based on NavIC are already working and more are on the way. The NavIC system boasts of 8 satellites in its constellation and it will be able to provide accurate positioning data within India and up to 1500 KM across the Indian borders. The NavIC launch puts India in an elite club of countries that have their own GPS constellation. USA (GPS), Russia (GLONASS), European Union (Galileo) and China (BeiDou) are the other nations with their own systems up and running.

How will NavIC benefit us?

New legislation suggests that all commercially registered vehicles from April 2019 are mandated to have an onboard GPS tracker and from Jan 2020 we can expect all commercial manufacturers of GPS devices to make their devices NavIC compliant. We will now have more accurate tracking as NavIC is specifically launched to make navigation and disaster relief in India easier. We are currently experiencing a wave of smart devices that have GPS built into them, we are seeing a flurry of automobile manufacturers launching smart cars with an inbuilt GPS navigation system, all of these cars will soon have more precise tracking and greater accuracy thanks to NavIC.

GPS services apps like Google Maps are a commonly used tool in metro cities to predict traffic congestion and to predict the ETAs during our daily commute. With the increase in usage of mobile-based positioning apps like Google Maps, it is advantageous for service providers like google to localize the GPS service used to meet the demand and to increase reliability. Thus, integrating their services to NavIC seems like an obvious choice.

India, over the past decade, has been battling unpredictable weather patterns and we have experienced at least 22 major cyclones in the last 9 years alone, leading to loss of life and property. With NavIC up and running, we can expect faster tracking of a cyclone and it will be easier to announce weather warnings early. Predicting drastic weather changes early will not only help fishermen but they will also help evacuation and guide rescue operations during emergencies.

How will businesses benefit?

With the launch of NavIC, domestic GPS device manufacturers will not need to follow the long, time consuming and resource-draining testing and approval process of foreign GPS service providers. Instead, they can get their devices domestically approved and compliant to NavIC guidelines. This will help bring down the cost of GPS devices in India leading to faster adoption and better availability of devices across the length and breadth of the subcontinent.

At Safetrax, we believe that NavIC will have a great impact on enhancing the safety of employees as they are transported to and from work. The accuracy of NavIC will help mitigate emergencies and faster tracking will help deliver a better, faster and more reliable experience to employees and parents alike. In our mission to make transportation safer for school children and employees, the increasing affordability of NavIC enabled GPS devices will help us reach a larger audience and it will help us to become a change leader in the transport automation industry.

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