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Posted Jul 23, 2010
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Captivate - GPS Issues

Anyone else experiencing basically no GPS lock?

 

I've seen it mentioned in plenty of other forums, but not here. I've tried all kinds of fixes and settings and the GPS on my unit is basically useless. I can get a very poor lock using just the wireless networks, but GPS never locks.

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Oct 21, 2010 7:22:48 AM
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Neither refurb, nor 2.2 will have GPS fixed. Samsung is still working on it.

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Oct 22, 2010 9:54:00 AM
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Its funny,  I left a review on Samsungs website about the phone being a great phone but having major GPS issues.  They wont post it because I said in the review that "thus far they have tried 2 fixes and at least on my unit it has not worked."

 

I said as it stands the phone is a 3 out of 5... it would be a 4 out of 5 with gps working.

 

 

If they wont post my review I guess you really can't trust samsungs reviews online.   

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Oct 24, 2010 10:02:57 PM
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Do you folks think that the GPS issue is a hardware problem or a software problem or a settings problem?

 

From what I have seen over the past months I have to conclude that either:

 

1) Samsung's GPS chip supplier delivered some portion of their chips that were bad. This is based on the idea that some folks have Captivates that worked fine from day one.

 

2) The quality control when the phones were assembled is really poor and some of the work was shoddy.

 

3) They didn't do a very good job of testing and for the phone to work you have to have a specific combination of settings set to specific values for everything to work correctly.

 

What do you all think?

 

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Oct 24, 2010 10:50:41 PM
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This issue is all driver, the captivate I am running right now could not get a lock with any previous update or hack. I would be able to get a couple of locks after a factory reset but even those would take ten minutes. I am currently running the froyo leak and the gps is perfect, fast and accurate locks, gps is fixed in froyo at least in the beta AT&T leak. Froyo was released overseas bit was pulled due to some bugs, it is only speculation to say they were gps issues.

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Oct 25, 2010 3:44:31 AM
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Edited by foxbat121 on Oct 25, 2010 at 3:45:01 AM

Sorry, GPS is not fixed in any Froyo build yet. You may get a fix but you still can't get a decent accuracy while driving.

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Oct 25, 2010 6:27:57 AM
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Well I donr know what roms you have flashed but the one I am running is great, my navigation is spot on and even on heavily covered backroads I am getting accuracy to within ten meters and on highway I have not even had a drift. What info do you have that says that gps has not been fixed yet? I can say that after jh7, my gps was worse than it was originally. With the function I am getting now there had to be some remedy even at the stage of this rom being leaked. Also what are your qualifications to have the title cell phone master?

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Oct 25, 2010 6:32:43 AM
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Edited by foxbat121 on Oct 25, 2010 at 6:33:12 AM

tylerdurdin wrote:
What info do you have that says that gps has not been fixed yet?

My own experience and experiences of many others. I'm on JI6 ROM and the same can the said for International version of JPM which is supposed to be the official 2.2 release until it is pulled in the last minute.

 

Note, the GPS issue affects different phones differently. Just because your phone behaves better doesn't mean it is a fix for everyone else.

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Oct 25, 2010 7:13:50 PM
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I agree with you completely, but thats the point, the small amount of people running custom roms are hardly a voice for a million phones. almost everyone i have talked too running a 2.2 variant says their gps is up and good, with the exception of 2.2 roms that have had the gps tweaked by a Dev. From what I have read there is no indication that GPS was the issue for them pulling the update. I will say that a few hacked 2.2 releases do have a faulty gps, but the early october release I have, has to have something right in the stew.

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Oct 25, 2010 8:06:52 PM
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Folks, I am afraid that some Captivates have hardware problems. Apparently, some are good. I tried 1 vibrant and 5 captivate. The GPS in my final captivate is working quite well. I tired GPS Test. It helped. But it is not as good as GPS Status and Toolbox. I recently reset my phone and it took 10-15 min to lock. After that, I can lock within seconds. I can lock 6-8 satellites even inside my house. If this does not work, you have a GPS problem. Return it and get another android phone. That is my advice.

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Oct 25, 2010 9:05:37 PM
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When my first device was new It locked for the first week, and then , nothing. A friend got two new devices same story worked for a week then nothing. For some reason it seems that most of the devices act this way, which is why people think when they get a new device it is fixed. Users should not have to use apps like GPS TEST and Toolbox to  make anything function correctly. The froyo I am running has nothing applied and is still working great. If you want to really test your gps toggle it on and off a couple of times, shut off wifi assistance, and then launch google navigator with the gps set to off so that the phone prompts you to turn it on. I have successfully got every captivate I have messed with to fail to lock using this method of testing. I even did it on a brand new device in front of a AT&T associate. It may work a couple of times but as soon as that error gets cached, GPS is done. For a successful gps at this point the only thing I have ever seen that has worked is from a brand new device, once we got a lock we left the GPS on, with google location sevices and wifi, never had a issue, used the navigator everyday for work and the places app for going out to dinner at night. All stayed well until the first time i shut the gps off.

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Oct 26, 2010 3:53:06 AM
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Sorry, has to dis-agree. As long as there are multiple instances of reported GPS issues still exist in 2.2 Froyo, it is not fixed in my book. Most ppl don't even know how to properly test the GPS issue in the first place. I know the official 2.2 is not pulled for GPS problem but for other issues. And reports I have read indicates that Samsung is still working on GPS issues. There are long list of complaints of GPS problem getting worse for the so-called official Froyo update in XDA i9000 forum.

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Oct 26, 2010 7:48:03 AM
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Edited by Zandora on Oct 26, 2010 at 7:49:29 AM

tylerdurdin wrote:

When my first device was new It locked for the first week, and then , nothing. A friend got two new devices same story worked for a week then nothing. For some reason it seems that most of the devices act this way, which is why people think when they get a new device it is fixed. Users should not have to use apps like GPS TEST and Toolbox to  make anything function correctly. The froyo I am running has nothing applied and is still working great. If you want to really test your gps toggle it on and off a couple of times, shut off wifi assistance, and then launch google navigator with the gps set to off so that the phone prompts you to turn it on. I have successfully got every captivate I have messed with to fail to lock using this method of testing. I even did it on a brand new device in front of a AT&T associate. It may work a couple of times but as soon as that error gets cached, GPS is done. For a successful gps at this point the only thing I have ever seen that has worked is from a brand new device, once we got a lock we left the GPS on, with google location sevices and wifi, never had a issue, used the navigator everyday for work and the places app for going out to dinner at night. All stayed well until the first time i shut the gps off.


If you're in any product business, the first product in a product line is usually buggy. So "early adopters", the ones that buy the first product, usually end up being beta testers, whether they want to be or not. So, if you don't like working through bugs, then wait for release 2 of a product, don't buy the "first" of whatever, whether it be a 3D TV or a cell phone with a new-to-market OS. If you do buy the first release of a product, then you pretty much have to suck it up and live/work through the fixes. Early adopters are the bug finders, so to speak, to go along with their bragging rights.

 

That said, if the GPS had not worked from Day 1 and ever since on my Captivate, I would have returned it for either another phone or another brand of phone within my trial period.

 

I came from using the original Tilt (did not upgrade to Tilt II) -- which always needed GPS Test to jumpstart the GPS chip in the phone. My Tilt locked every time with GPS Test, never without. So, it made sense to me to install GPS Test on my Android, even before I used it the first time. So when I first started GPS on my Captivate and it didn't lock, the next thing I did was open GPS Test, and it got the lock right away. Maybe I've had good luck because GPS Test did something to the phone/gps chip that kept it working fine. Don't know. And it's been very accurate at the street level. Even through the JH7 upgrade.

 

Anyway, my point is that early adopters in all industries pay the price of living through buggy first-release devices. It just comes with the territory. No product is ever perfect at the first release. So as early adopters, you gotta do what you gotta do to make your phone work the way you want, even though it doesn't seem fair. That's the price one pays to be an early adopter. If you don't like that price, become a late adopter, and all the issues will have been worked out by the time you get it.

 

Re: GPS fix?

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Oct 26, 2010 11:20:44 AM
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Zandora wrote:

 

Anyway, my point is that early adopters in all industries pay the price of living through buggy first-release devices. It just comes with the territory. No product is ever perfect at the first release. So as early adopters, you gotta do what you gotta do to make your phone work the way you want, even though it doesn't seem fair. That's the price one pays to be an early adopter. If you don't like that price, become a late adopter, and all the issues will have been worked out by the time you get it.

 


I’m not entirely sure I understand your argument;   this is not Samsungs first GSM phone with GPS.  It’s not even their first Android phone with GPS.  They have had a few before hand and should be able to produce working products.  Samsung has been making GPS cell phones for well over 5 years… when do we remove the early adopter sticker from them?  

 

I had my weekly phone call with Samsung support.  The guy seemed tiered of hearing about GPS problems and said that he sent the message up the pipe but has been told there is no fix in the immediate future.   That leaves me to think that the Froyo patch they are reading in the next few weeks will not have it.

 

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Oct 26, 2010 12:40:59 PM
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Edited by Zandora on Oct 26, 2010 at 12:44:04 PM

You remove "early adopter" when at Captivate II. Basically, if the first time you buy a product you buy the 2nd generation of that product then you're not considered an early adopter.

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Oct 26, 2010 12:44:26 PM
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Well I am running JI6 Froyo and I did notice that after 30-40 mins my GPS would work perfectly fine but once I shut it down it would go back to its routine of a good initial lock but no tracking whatsoever so to me it seem like the GPS needs to "warm up" I dunno why I am hesitant to do a exchange cause I really don't want a refurb phone but if the "official" release of Froyo doesn't fix I defiantly will do a exchange to me GPS is on a secondary feature that I need 2-3x per year so I will wait for the official 2.2 update.

 


I am an AT&T employee and the postings on this site are my own and don’t necessarily represent AT&T’s positions, strategies or opinions.

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Oct 26, 2010 7:24:13 PM
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Are you running a early i9000 rom? If you are, you should expect gps issues, Anyone running a rom leaked more than five or six months ago is going to have issues most likely. There was no gps fix in the washer at this point, and devs were implementing their own fixes. I had really good luck with GPS while running later Cognition roms not so much with any of the earlier ones. The froyo I am running now is the leak from the beginning of october and other than some glitchy apps this GPS works fine, and produced same results on two other captivates, most important is that it is untouched by Devs, which for me means there is no outside GPS tweaks involved. I am not saying that there is anything final but samsung is not going to release anything at this point that is not a fix. The multiple instances of GPS failure you are speaking of are off of many different froyo leaks of course there will be no consistency. Also most people should not have to do any testing to their phone, its the beauty of buying a new phone, anyone who launches a gps app should have it work for them. I am not doubting your knowledge of phones but I think you are summing up an entire market based on a few hacked roms and a thousand people who have mixed results based on mixed roms. I am on XDA all the time and have had my first captivate since release day, and been closely following this since. One last thing NO report you have read has anything official, You most likely read the same crap I do and it all comes from blogs and opinion samsung has not released a single comment other than some open ended apologies and a couple of update coming soon stories.  

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Oct 27, 2010 5:22:27 AM
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Tyler,

 

I am not being sarcastic here, bou may have actually stumbled onto the needle in the haystack that they have been looking for in their debugging of this problem. You should really (PLEASE!!!) call Samsung tech support and ask to talk to a level 3 tech and tell him/her what you have found. Debugging this issue must be a total nightmare with all of the different combinations of apps/settings/actions taken by the people who had problems.

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Oct 27, 2010 7:33:24 AM
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I can’t believe it’s actually working better than ever!!!  After going through two phones, multiple tips & tricks to improve GPS performance the "GSM Hard Reset" actually worked.  Now I am ecstatic that I can say my GPS works super smooth in City, Highway, Rural areas.  I have been testing it out in the city, setting my destination and purposely going of route.  With each turn the Google Nav was on point, and before I could reach the end of the block it had already recalculated the route.  I was actually astonished to see Google Maps lock on to the satellites within about 10 seconds after a reboot, and with in 4 after initial GPS fix.  I used to place the phone in my cradle under my windshield, then wait (not moving) sometimes 2 minutes or longer before it would fix.  After the "GSM Hard Reset" it actually locked onto satellites while still in my hand, before I could get it in the dock.  Now after I received the JH7 update my GPS was still wonky, but much better than before JH7.  The issue with update feature in menu returning "Could not connect AT&T Server" is gone.  It actually checked for an OTA update and returned "No Updates".  I saw several post and video from end users saying that this also improved their devices.  However before I trusted just some guy off the net, I tweeted @GalaxySsupport.  They told me it was no guarantee but they have seen a lot of users have success with a factory reset.  This is preformed with the dialer not the settings menu.  It will erase everything from the phone (internal SD also), so make sure you back up you stuff to your expandable SD if you have one/PC if not.  BE SURE TO REMOVE SD CARD & SIM!!! 

 

Tweet @GalaxySsupport for full instructions on twitter.  Trust me it really works, and was well worth the time!!!

 

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Oct 27, 2010 8:15:00 AM
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GSM Hard Reset  will wipe out everything on your phone. You should warn anyone who wants to try your tip.

 

How many days have passed since you GSM reseted your phone?

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Oct 27, 2010 8:21:21 AM
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Edited by mife22 on Oct 27, 2010 at 8:30:10 AM

Thanks, Last sentence in the Paragraph.

 

It will erase everything from the phone (internal SD also), so make sure you back up you stuff to your expandable SD if you have one/PC if not.  BE SURE TO REMOVE SD CARD & SIM!!! 

 

I actually reset it yesterday 10-26-10, I know its soon but this it the biggest improvement I've seen on this phone.  I will keep the room posted as time passes.

 

I am aware "Its not a new trick."  Simply tried it, working for me & wanted to share my experience.

 

 

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Oct 27, 2010 8:26:25 AM
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Edited by foxbat121 on Oct 27, 2010 at 8:27:26 AM

Yeah, I wouldn't trust anything until you passed 7-day mark.

 

This isn't some new trick and doe not necessary work for everyone.

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Oct 27, 2010 8:52:00 AM
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I am aware "Its not a new trick."  Simply tried it, working for me & wanted to share my experience.

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Oct 27, 2010 1:05:07 PM
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Zandora wrote:

You remove "early adopter" when at Captivate II. Basically, if the first time you buy a product you buy the 2nd generation of that product then you're not considered an early adopter.


Thats what I was pointing out. A name is a name.... Samsung has been making the product (GPS Cell phones) for a very long time.   One might say that the captivate is a keybordless 3rd version of the Behold / Moment / Captivate.

 

 

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Nov 8, 2010 8:52:25 AM
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Just wanted to give an update.   I just got off the phone with a Samsung Rep and they said that “GPS fix is in the final phases of testing and should be available for download and via carrier transmission this month”   This will mark the 4th gps fix push by Samsung.  I went back and forth with her about what if the problem is Hardware and not software.   She would not budge saying that “this can only be a software issue.”

 

I met someone else over the weekend with a captivate and theirs locked on in seconds and held the lock as we drove down a few blocks to a coffee house via Google nav.  That said, I no longer doubt that others have perfect/semi perfect working GPS on their phones.  I just know that many still do not.  This deeply concerns me.  All things the same software wise how could some work and some not? 

 

Anyone with a working captivate, what was its manufacture date… I’m wondering if they

 

A) had a bad batch of gps chips

B) had a batch of gps chips from a different manufacture and didn’t write the code correctly for the 2nd batch.

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Nov 23, 2010 11:07:33 AM
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skahead wrote:

Just wanted to give an update.   I just got off the phone with a Samsung Rep and they said that “GPS fix is in the final phases of testing and should be available for download and via carrier transmission this month”   This will mark the 4th gps fix push by Samsung.  I went back and forth with her about what if the problem is Hardware and not software.   She would not budge saying that “this can only be a software issue.”

 

I met someone else over the weekend with a captivate and theirs locked on in seconds and held the lock as we drove down a few blocks to a coffee house via Google nav.  That said, I no longer doubt that others have perfect/semi perfect working GPS on their phones.  I just know that many still do not.  This deeply concerns me.  All things the same software wise how could some work and some not? 

 

Anyone with a working captivate, what was its manufacture date… I’m wondering if they

 

A) had a bad batch of gps chips

B) had a batch of gps chips from a different manufacture and didn’t write the code correctly for the 2nd batch.


I'd like to know the same and the firmware & rev level of the working Captivates as well.

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Nov 23, 2010 9:39:28 PM
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our captivate has never locked on and GPS is completely unusable.  It literally has NEVER locked on.

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Nov 24, 2010 8:04:06 AM
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The idea of a bad lot of GPS chips occurred to me early on. Let us all just hope that Samsung (and AT&T) are savy enough to get the lot number/firmware/hardware numbers off of the phones that are returned as not having a working GPS so that they can figure out what the possible source of the problem is. It's basic debugging, but sometimes folks don't do it, thinking that it will always be a hardware problem.

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Nov 30, 2010 1:29:44 PM
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Samsung has released a new app in the Android market... search for "GPSRestore Samsung" it claims to address some of the GPS issues for Vibrant & Captivate. I have D/L and installed the app and it does seem to make a difference in the GPS acquisition and lock times. The real test will be is the accuracy and tracking improved?

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Nov 30, 2010 1:40:52 PM
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Edited by foxbat121 on Nov 30, 2010 at 1:42:22 PM

The  app description says it restores the original GPS config file if it has been modified by lbsTestMode. So, what it does is reset you back to orginal state. The only reason you use lbsTestMode to change settings is because the original settings doesn't give you satisfactory GPS performance in the first place. So, this is useless for obvious reason.

 

The GPS issue is beyond what a simple settings change can fix. If it were so, Samsung could come up with a fix 3 months ago.

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Dec 1, 2010 12:36:30 PM
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Edited by skahead on Dec 1, 2010 at 12:36:54 PM

 

Just got off the line with a level 3 tech in Texas (not India.)   He said that Samsungs Froyo fixes the issue; however Froyo has introduced a plethora of errors in other parts of the phone and they are currently working out the bugs.   He would not lock into a date of release but said that he already has it on his phone and has a feeling it will be this month. This leaves me to believe that Samsung gave up on fixing the issue in 2.1 and put their focus to rewrite the drivers for 2.2.  It also leads me to believe we will never get 3.0.

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