Remember Skyhook? The people who helped Apple put a little location-sensing inside the v.1 iPhone? 

Well, hot on the heels of the most recent Apple mobile, Skyhook has introduced XPS 2.0, its next-generation hybrid positioning system that combines signals from Wi-Fi access points, GPS satellites and – now – cell towers to deliver location data for mobile handsets (such as the…)

The company insists it is offering the most advanced positioning system in the world by combining its positioning algorithms with comprehensive environment survey data.

The original version of XPS delivered "multi-mode" location switching between WPS and GPS readings based on availability and error estimates. XPS 2.0 combines raw Wi-Fi, GPS and cell tower readings to produce a single hybrid calculation. In the most difficult indoor and urban environments, XPS can, for example, leverage signals from just two GPS satellites to improve Wi-Fi location accuracy by 35%+. In a typical deep urban setting Assisted-GPS (A-GPS) can only produce a location 70% of the time outdoors due to blocked signals. 

It’s fast, too – XPS delivers a location in just 4 seconds from a complete cold start compared to 30-60 seconds with just A-GPS. 

The company has also reached a deal with CSR that brings Skyhook’s advanced location capabilities to CSR’s Wi-Fi silicon, making it easier for device makers to launch location based services.

As part of the XPS 2.0 launch, Skyhook Wireless is also introducing its first cellular positioning system that uses Skyhook’s fleet of field signal surveyors. Today the system covers major US and European cities expanding to full Skyhook global coverage by the end of 2008. 

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