GPS (Global positioning system) is a satellite-based positioning service, originally conceived by the US military. The disadvantage with GPS is that you need good reception and direct contact with GPS-satellites in order for it to work properly. It is possible to further improve the accuracy with DGPS (Differential GPS), but then it will require special type of GPS-tracker that can receive signals from stationary GPS masts. No special mobile device is required as these services use the SIM-card to be able to locate the position. The major disadvantage with GSM mobile tracking technology is in general the significantly worse accuracy on location than with GPS technology. To compensate for poor accuracy, operators are constantly working in improving their technology and thus communications platforms which will definitively improve the quality of locations over time.
GALILEO is a European alternative to GPS which is under development and is expected to be completed in 2019. James Craig currently lives in Birmingham, UK, and is a telecommunication expert with a keen interest for the latest app developments within VoIP and mobile phone tracking.
In order to understand how the whole process works, you have to know how mobile phones work to enable communication via telephone calls. The signals which the mobile telephone emits are picked up by radio towers which are part of the respective mobile network. The phone tracker technology is quite complex, but it is fairly easy to get an idea of how it works. The technology works to determine the distance from the respective transmission tower to the mobile phone. There are two main types of technologies with which you can pinpoint the location of a mobile phone.
The accuracy of network-based technologies depends on the number of transmission towers in an area and on how closely they are positioned to one another. The problem with the device-based technology is that the software or hardware that has to be installed may not be compatible with the device itself. You have certainly seen in movies how the police locate the phone of a missing person as part of an investigation. The following infographic illustrates how you can track a mobile phone using a smart phone, GPS technology and Crystal Ball’s Mobile Track business application. Tracking of mobile phones to an approximate location via the MSC (MSISDN) available with SS7 access. Track Any Mobile is a web application coded in PHP facilitating tracking of mobile phones using the MSC SS7 technique as presented at the 25th CCC conference by Tobias Engel. As is inherent with use of this technique only an approximate position (generally accurate to within a few miles, less in more populated areas) is available. For each mobile phone being tracked a report is provided detailing the phones movement between pre saved localities (a locality is a geographic area generally covering a few miles).
Localities are shared between all phones tracked in a user account that are on the same network.
The Global Positioning System (GPS) satellite program wasn't just designed for acquiring correct directions to a particular location.
AccuTracking is a paid service that enables individuals to track the status of a Windows Mobile, Blackberry, iDEN, or Android mobile phone in real time. Some major cellular service providers in the United States offer location-based tracking for their mobile customers. Smartphones offer even more advanced tracking, courtesy of advanced operating systems and complex applications like Btracking. Buddyway is a free option permits you to track, save and share your trips with friends and family members.
Foursquare, Facebook Places and the GyPSii social network permit friends to voluntarily "check in" to a location, after which the "check in" is then visible to people in their networks.


Using GPS to locate a cell phone without a person's permission is an invasion of privacy and is illegal.
Tracking a cell phone using GPS can provide peace of mind to concerned parents and family members. For a normal user using tracking technologies might be a way to know and see where relatives and friends are or to track a vehicle and its route history.
Below we will discuss those that are readily available and most popular for the mainstream audience. A GPS-device receives signals from three to four satellites and can calculate the distance between the satellites which in turn calculates the trackers location. You can get a GPS tracker anywhere from just 50 pounds to a few hundred that can give you very high precision on accuracy, sometimes almost pin-point. These earth bound GPS-masts can in turn by using their own location calculate errors in satellite positioning and send that data for corrections to the GPS-tracker – which in turn improves accuracy.
In general this works in the way that the GSM telephony network in theory always knows where your and other peoples mobile phones are, in other words all UK mobile phone operators have access to this data (however, there are strict regulations governing who can locate which mobile and a consent system). This is mostly true for those that want to located someone in the less densely populated areas, where the telephone masts are farther apart. Although using satellite technology for positioning like GPS, GLONASS have satellites orbiting in different tracks than with GPS – giving much better accuracy if you are close to the poles.
Its aim is to be a free service and provide much improved location accuracy than GPS, GSM or GLONASS. In fact it is nothing close to what most people imagine – there are strict rules regulating this market in the UK for network-based location services (see below) and many apps are very cautious when it comes to privacy matters. As the location of each mast is fixed, the phone’s location can be identified with the use of the appropriate technology. If the system uses interpolation of the signals from towers located close to one another, it can produce the phone’s exact location with a very small deviation.
They use the existing network of a telecommunications company to detect a radio signal and to obtain the data necessary for determining the precise location of the phone.
The higher the density of the towers is the more accurate the location results are and vice versa. In order for this type of tracking to work, the device must have a certain type of software program or a hardware chip installed.
It was also set up so that people like yourself can accurately track the location of your loved ones. The service provides the exact locations of the device, providing the speed and direction of travel.
For instance, AT&T, Verizon and Sprint all offer GPS tracking for both families and businesses.
As a result, your loved ones need not fret in anticipation of your call when you are on the road.
This is not real-time tracking, as the location of a device (or person) is not visible until there is a "check in" at that location. Legal exceptions exist, as parents can track their children's phone and employers can track the whereabouts of their employees using GPS. While for companies tracking services can be an even important tool in managing the organization by for example mobilizing human capital or resources – example of its uses is documented by taxi fleets, logistics firm and construction companies.
Accuracy is usually between 5-10 meters give and take in good conditions, and in less than optimal conditions (like bad weather and winds) it can deviate by about 50-100 meters.
By requesting the location via an interface in a service such as Lociloci one can find out the location of a mobile phone.
Unfortunately it is more difficult to get your hands on a tracking receiver for the GLONASS-system than for GPS.
When you think about it, is not so much different from locating via a mobile phone, as most people spend a good deal of time in the same place.


Based on this data, the system can determine which transmission mast is closest to the device. This is possible because all masts that are in a certain area will pick up the signal coming from the device. However, the technology described above and based on GSM works for virtually all mobile phones, old and new, irrespective of their model or manufacturer.
In general, the accuracy depends on the hardware and software the system uses for locating the devices as well. In this way, the handset itself can emit a signal which the technology can pick up and compute so that the exact location of the device is identified.
The available methods, however, differ based on the type of phone you possess and the type of provider with whom you're registered.
The service claims to be a low-cost child locator, ideal for concerned parents who are on a budget. The phone's location is constantly updated and then transmitted to an interactive map that the mobile account holder may access from the Internet. The device needs to be GPS enabled, of course, but it also needs an active wireless data plan. However, it is illegal under United States federal law to install tracking software on an adult's phone without his or her knowledge.
GPS typically requires a relatively good "line of sight" to the GPS satellites and it can sometimes take longer than expected to get "a fix" on a satellite using GPS.
If you're simply worried about losing your phone or having it stolen, your best bet may be to opt for a free smartphone application.
In urban areas you can expect accuracy for a position somewhere between +-25-300 meters, while in rural areas it can be as far off as several kilometers. You can locate your loved ones with the click of a button without calling them and interrupting their activities.
In general, you should not deprive yourself of the benefits that the advancements in technology have to offer just because of lack of knowledge or misinformation. To them, the signal will come at different strengths, so with effective computation precise location is perfectly possible. It should be pointed out that these services are completely legal and allow you to track only the phones of people who have given their express consent to be located by you.
Account holders log into the secured web server and view the phone's position using a Google Maps style layout.
Upcoming features include the ability to track friends and families directly from a social network like Facebook. Carriers are permitted to utilize triangulation, GPS and other tracking technologies in the event of a kidnapping. What's more, GPS can draw a lot of power from a smartphone or cell phone, significantly reducing the battery life if the GPS chip is active for extended periods of time. Keep in mind also that as technology progresses, more free options may appear on the market.
Similarly, the signal emitted from a transmission tower can be picked up by another device such as a computer. These services have many using including locating lost phones and children who have gone out playing, to name a few. However, such actions are usually coordinated with the police and thus immune to any form of prosecution. Some standalone GPS tracking devices can provide better battery life, but they may also carry a monthly subscription fee.



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