u-blox Creates Miniature ROM-based SuperSense GPS Module for Handhelds

u-blox AG, the leading Swiss provider of innovative GPS receiver technology, today today launched the NEO-4S GPS module which packs high sensitivity, exceptionally low power consumption and a USB port into a miniature 12.2 x 16 mm package. The module’s -156 dBm SuperSense(R) tracking sensitivity extends positioning coverage to deep indoor locations and enables solutions that use smaller or covert antennas.

The absence of a costly Flash EPROM and the ATR0635 single chip that powers the module, developed jointly by u-blox and Atmel, keeps the module’s footprint small and the price tag down. Its low power needs and built-in power saving modes ensures power usage is kept at a bare minimum. These features make the NEO-4S ideal for battery operated handheld applications with strict space, power and cost requirements. Users of mobile phones, smart phones, PDAs, Bluetooth GPS receivers and other handheld devices powered by the NEO-4S will also benefit from accurate positioning and uninterrupted coverage in weak signal areas such as train stations and urban canyons.

“The NEO-4S’ compact and versatile architecture was specifically designed to fit the stringent requirements of handheld applications or smart antennas,” said Thomas Seiler, u-blox CEO. “u-blox’ latest NEO form factor is set to become the GPS module industry’s dominant design as did its predecessors, the TIM and the LEA,” he added.

The module’s Serial Peripheral Interface (SPI) enables an external serial E2PROM to store unlimited start-up configuration settings, providing an innovative alternative to the traditional boot-time configuration pins.

SMT pads in the module allow for fully automatic assembly processes with standard pick-and-place equipment and reflow soldering, enabling cost-efficient, high-volume production.

NEO-4S samples will be available in December.

About u-blox
u-blox is an international company headquartered in Switzerland, with sales organizations in the Americas, Europe and Asia. Founded in 1997, u-blox develops leading positioning technology, products and services based on the Global Positioning System (GPS) for the automotive and mobile communications markets.