No GPS signal on Windows Mobile

Some SportyPal users are having trouble getting a GPS signal on their Windows Mobile devices and can’t get past the “Initializing GPS” screen. This post is a list of the most common GPS problems, with instructions on how to solve them.

Before you do anything, make sure that your phone radio is on and that airplane/flight mode is off. Most devices require the phone radio to be on in order to use GPS. You can view and change these settings  in your device’s Communication/Wireless Manager app (usually located in Settings).

First thing after that, make sure that you’re in a place where you can get a clear view of the sky. You usually can’t get a GPS signal while indoors.

Second, give it some time. Getting a GPS fix for the first time can take a while.

Next, check the device’s GPS configuration. Go to Start -> Settings -> System -> External GPS. In the Access tab, see the “Manage GPS automatically” option and make sure that it’s checked.
Some Samsung Omnia users have reported that unchecking this option, saving the settings, then checking it again enables their device to get a GPS fix.

Also, activate your device’s Assisted GPS application. Most GPS enabled Windows Mobile devices come with an aGPS application – usually this is QuickGPS, which can be found in the Programs menu (Settings -> Programs -> QuickGPS). Open it while connected to the Internet and click the Download button.
Samsung Omnia users probably have an application called Extended GPS.

Note that QuickGPS has been known to send out bad updates that may cause your device’s GPS to stop working altogether (even freezing up or crashing your device). If this happens, you should download another QuickGPS update. If the issue still persists, delete Temp\xtra.bin and Windows\xtra.bin, then reset the device.

Sometimes, a device’s GPS receiver just decides to stop working for no apparent reason. Try resetting a couple of times, and try removing the battery and placing it in again.

If all of this fails and you still can’t get a GPS fix, we’re pretty much stumped. Try using another application which uses GPS (if you don’t have anything installed, try downloading GPS Compass), and see if it works. If it does, then write back and we’ll try to find another solution. If it doesn’t, you should contact the store that sold you the device or your device manufacturer.

UPDATE (09.07.2009): We found an excellent application today, GPS Test, that automatically finds your GPS port and baud rate. It could help you test your GPS signal and find your GPS settings if you need to set them manually. Get it here.
UPDATE (09.11.2009): As of SportyPal version 1.1.1, if all of this fails with SportyPal but GPS Test works, your best bet is to go to “My Profile” and activate “Native GPS” with the settings that GPS Test found.

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36 Comments on “No GPS signal on Windows Mobile”

  1. sleek Says:

    One of the Samsung users says that it can takes up to 15mins to get s GPS signal. Any advise on this?

    • SportyPal Says:

      Getting a GPS fix for the first time can take some time. Subsequent attempts should be faster. Still, you should use Extended GPS.

  2. sleek Says:

    Okay, just remembered previously when using the Navigation Software that the Comm Port, that is required for the GPS devices, may be used up by another Software or Apps. So check the Comm Port Settings or do a reset.

    Happened to me yesterday after upgrading the software, then switch to the Nav Apps and realised that no Comm Port was available, so reset the D810/P3600 and it works thereafter.

    Btw, when using Version 1.0.4, the Walking Screen was replaced by an “a”, as what was reported by Mike on the other thread.

  3. damien short Says:

    please give the option to manually select the gps setting as out of 20+ time ive only been able to connect 2 times

    • SportyPal Says:

      You can change your GPS settings in External GPS, if you uncheck “Manage GPS automatically”.

  4. Enrico Says:

    I’ve the problem with COM configuration
    I’Ve a HTC P3300 with WM 6.0 and TOMTom, the port that it’s use the COM4 in the Programm ,and no one in the hardware, Baud 4.800 in GPS setting pannel,and tomtom works great.
    Can I configure manually, and wich value and port i ‘ve to insert???
    yhanks

    • SportyPal Says:

      The best you can do is edit the settings in External GPS if the automatic option doesn’t work for you.

  5. Enrico Says:

    ok,i agree with you, but which port i’ve insert in “Programm” ,”Hardware” and “Baud”
    Thanks

    • SportyPal Says:

      You can find out using GPS Test (see near the end of the post for a download link). It’ll autodetect your GPS settings.

  6. Fabio Says:

    I join Enrico in his request: same hardware, same GPS config, same problem in having SportPal get the GPS signal.
    Other GPS programs I’m using on device work fine.

    Thanks.

  7. Jump_daddy33 Says:

    I have a samsung blackjack 2 with GPS. I have 2 questions? Sportypal does not display correctly. It displays vertically instead of horizontally. How do I change that? Also, sportypal says I ran 3.75 miles this morning but the other day, my son rode his bike on the same course with a garmin GPS and it said the course is 3.1. Why is there such a huge difference? Is it the GPS or the program. By the way, I’d love the program even more if these 2 issues get resolved. Thanks….

    • SportyPal Says:

      Landscape screens are not supported, so SportyPal has to rotate the screen on landscape devices when it starts. There’s no way to change this at this time.

      As for the difference in distances, it’s probably the GPS hardware. If you upload both workouts and send us the links, we’ll take a more detailed look.

  8. Bruno Says:

    Could anyone explain where in the world i can configure wich port the SportyPal will search for the GPS? I know about the “manual” seting of the External GPS inside the WM Settings. But after change that setup nothing happens. Even with the automatic GPS management disabled. All other software found my GPS with no latency, only sportypal remains at the screen ‘Initializing GPS’. regards

    • Bruno Says:

      Better, could you say wich is the “standart” setup that sportypal looks for the GPS? Port and Baud? If we know that we can setup it manually trough the “external GPS”! Regards

      • SportyPal Says:

        SportyPal looks wherever Windows Mobile tells it to, so there is no standard setup there. Managed GPS should be fine, but 1.0.8 will let you choose the port and baud rate manually.

  9. Naresh Says:

    Hi,

    My Device ASUS P527 WM 6.1 Pocket PC Prof.
    Presently using GPS base softwear Google Map,Trackri,NaviComputer,Location Courier etc.

    I am having trouble getting a GPS signal on their Windows Mobile devices and can’t get past the “Initializing GPS” screen. Also programm get HANGUP. I have to go to TASK MANEGER to stop the task. I have notice here one thing that i see two icone of SportyPal at a time and both stop if i stop the task.
    So i requist developer to resolve the issue as soon as possible.
    Regards: Naresh ( India )

  10. Stefano Says:

    Often my sportypal app on BB8310 suddenly stop it… and the mobile reset … wihtout touching any key…

  11. Tonny Says:

    Hi,

    I am using HTC Touch Diamond (with WM 6.1 Professional, CPU: Qualcomm MSM7201A, Windows CE 5.2.19965) to make/programm my application, which access to the GPS-Receiver, by accessing directly to the Serial Port (not through GPS Intermediate Driver).
    In HTC Touch Diamond, where I programmed and tested my application all the time works perfectly,
    BUT when I try to run the same application in another HTC smartphone (HTC P6500, with WM 6.0 Professional, CPU: Qualcomm MSM7200, Windows CE 5.2.1622) it does not access to the GPS-Receiver at all (even the application is started). I dont know why.

    I’m using VS 2005 Standard Edition. Even worst is when I set some breakpoints => application on Debugging mode DOES NOT START AT ALL :(.

    Do I need to make any Upgrade (WM 6.0 => WM6.1) for HTC P6500 in order to bring it working or set any parameters into the VS or HTC P6500?

    thank you,
    waiting for ur feedbacks

    Tonny

    • SportyPal Says:

      No OS upgrade should be necessary as long as you’re running WM5 or higher. There’s also no reason not to use the intermediate driver. Have you checked if other GPS-based apps work with your P6500?

      • Tonny Says:

        thanx for ur reply.

        I checked Google Maps, and HTC GPS TOOL, both of them receiver the GPS signals and show the right possition.

        I use the intermediate driver ONLY to check the COM-Port I have to establish the connection to (GPSOpenDevice() …GPSCloseDevice() ) and then I access to that port.

        I think I solved the problem (by using fprint()):
        It was hanging by the function OPENCOMPort(). Inside that function I firstly Create the File and fill the DCB and COMMTIMEOUTS structures with right parameters
        and just before leaving the function OPENCOMPort() there is a loop that reads from that COM-port (stays inside the loop as long data from Port are available).
        And this problem didn’t happen in HTC Touch Diamond (maybe the GPS-receiver of HTC Touch Diamond didn’t send data so fast as the by HTC P6500 does?).

        Maybe the best solution is to take that loop away, hope so.

        Did you face any experiences like this?

        thanx again.

  12. Tonny Says:

    Actually the loop is made in order to delete any data that were before into the buffer used by Com port.
    thanx

  13. Tonny Says:

    Hi again,

    another topic I want to discuss with you.
    I have two smartphones (both HTC-s) and I want to make it possible to connect HTC-A via bluetooth to HTC-B in order to make it possible for HTC-A to surf in Internet via Bluetooth from HTC-B.
    I made a dial-up Bluetooth connection (in both HTCs):
    Start->Settings->Connection(tab)->Connection(icon). In actuall Network ADD_new_Connection: NEW->Connection_name: test and Modem: Bluetooth. They find each other, share the password (if we want to set it) and activate the Dial-up Service, then comes the CALL-NUMER to be given, which makes me confused. Is that a calling number to call any server of (mobile) provider to establish the internet connection or is any number of the form *99# or *99***1#?

    Can you please give my any suggestions how to achieve this?

    Actually finally instead of HTC-B I have to use a Satelite telephone (Thuraya) as modem for HTC-A, in order to provide it internet via Satelite when there is not GPRS connection.

  14. Tonny Says:

    actually with *99***1# I meant the CID (connection ID) in phone-book to be used.

    thank you again.

    waiting for ur feedbacks

  15. Wojtek Kasinski Says:

    The phone may also be disconnecting GPS when going into Standby mode.
    Make the following registry changes to keep them turned on like other WM phones:

    [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Power\State\Resuming]
    “gps0:”=dword:00000001
    “gpd0:”=dword:00000001
    “com4:”=dword:00000001

    [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Power\State\Unattended]
    “gps0:”=dword:00000001
    “gpd0:”=dword:00000001
    “com4:”=dword:00000001

    [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Power\State\Suspend]
    “gps0:”=dword:00000001
    “gpd0:”=dword:00000001
    “com4:”=dword:00000001

    • Tonny Says:

      I am accessing directly to the GPS-receiver by using the serial-port and not throught GPS Intermediate Driver. So I think it would not be a problem if the phone’s mode change as long as I am accessing directly to the GPS-receiver, or it is?

      thank you

      Tonny

      • SportyPal Says:

        That depends on the device’s hardware. Different devices behave differently when the power mode changes.

  16. mario Says:

    make a general reset to the phone this may be cause of a deleted file .so the phone recovers the file automatically


  17. […] (Note: if you are using Windows Mobile, see this post) […]

  18. Andrej Says:

    I`m using ASUS P 535 and WM 6 Professional. I can`t connect my device with GPS(only if I use Sportypal).
    If I use I go my way navigation it works perfect.Any solutions?

    Thank you.

  19. Andrej Says:

    No, it doesn`t.

  20. Vernon Says:

    Have an HTC HD2, all i am getting is loading gps, at it for hours, HELP! The software works on the regular Sporty Pal but not the “pro” Why is that


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