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True North vs Phone North in iOS platform

Posted on 2014-01-23
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Last Modified: 2014-03-18
Dear Experts

I have a Map iOS application where we need the map to be always pointing to the user direction (while driving), regardless of the true North and however the user turns right/left. Actually the latest Google Map iOS App has this feature very stable (not good on the native Maps App)

Does Google Map API support this and with 3D mode for third parties ?

Any issues/bugs on this because my developer is not yet able to do it! Herein the APIs about it I guess https://developers.google.com/maps/documentation/ios/streetview#orientation

Thanks for your help
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Question by:khamouda
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Duncan Roe earned 1000 total points
ID: 39810653
Assuming the API give you access to the RMC NMEA sentence, that has the heading in it. You would just feed that number into the rotation API as far as I can see
(I've only ever programmed with NMEA sentences - no GUI stuff so far)
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by:khamouda
ID: 39811208
May you elaborate more please ? We are depending on Google APIs
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by:Duncan Roe
ID: 39811327
I am not familiar with the Google API. However, all GPS devices initially produce what is known as NMEA sentences. These are ASCII strings. The RMC (Recommended Minimum Content) sentence contains the information you want. I was rather hoping the Google API would give you access to the latest one received. You can read more about the RMC sentence here
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by:khamouda
ID: 39814851
Thanks Roe
The iOS provide APIs for the heading and coursing, but it seems it works only on apple maps (not sure). We need it for google.
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by:Duncan Roe
ID: 39816040
Very odd. Heading and Speed Over Ground have nothing to do with maps. They come from the GPS device itself.
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by:khamouda
ID: 39816067
Yes. But they are going to draw it on the google map
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by:Duncan Roe
ID: 39819052
I thought you wanted to rotate the map
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by:khamouda
ID: 39922724
I've requested that this question be deleted for the following reason:


My all respect to the Expert, but my problem I not yet solved. We had to do it in a completely other way

Thanks anyways
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by:Duncan Roe
ID: 39922725
Please post what way you ended up doing it. That would be so much more useful to others than simply deleting the Q. You can then accept your post as the answer (0 points)
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by:khamouda
ID: 39930231
Using the native GPS API and rotating the Google map was not stable at all, the map keeps jumping/rotating and even settling to the wrong direction.

It seems we will have to depend on rotating the current-user-location object itself (an arrow or a car) and set its direction according to the actual movement , not based on the phone direction itself

Although the API says that coursing is also provided but it seems not going to be reliable too in our application, (as per the developer!)

Herein the info and device heading / course and the difference between them

https://developer.apple.com/library/ios/documentation/userexperience/conceptual/LocationAwarenessPG/GettingHeadings/GettingHeadings.html

Thanks a lot :)
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by:Duncan Roe
ID: 39930781
The course will be unstable at low speeds (and meaningless when stationary). I would have expected the heading would be stable as long as the instrument is secured to the vehicle. Which one gave you trouble?
Using a rolling average for either might help.
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by:khamouda
ID: 39930955
We didn't try the course for the reason you mentioned. Heading wasn't good enough but maybe we will have to average. also we wanted to be 3D too which complicating things further, although the google iPhone app is very good, honestly speaking the developer himself might be the issue :(
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by:Duncan Roe
ID: 39932014
As far as this Q is concerned, in light of the link you posted I feel I must correct my post http:#a39816040: GPS gives you the Course and not the Heading, the latter coming from the phone itself. It still puzzles me why the Heading should be unstable, unless it's an actual mobile phone in someone's pocket.
An application I worked on a few years ago used Course, subject to a minimum Speed Over Ground. Otherwise it conventionally indicated zero (true North). That was in a little compass widget, relating to the currently selected vehicle.
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by:Duncan Roe
ID: 39932016
Maybe you could Heading as a substitute for Course at low speed or when stationary. Windy roads will still be a problem though, perhaps ameliorated by some kind of averaging.
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