SUPL 2.0 – The Next Big Thing in Location Based Services? Part 2

By Manikantan Parameswaran On January 1, 2011
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In our last post, we looked at the background to SUPL and the drivers for its most recent release, SUPL 2.0. Now we’re going to look in more detail at the new capabilities of SUPL 2.0:

  1. Triggered Services: This means that location measurement can be triggered by the network or the SET based on user location. A geographic region can be divided into small parts and each of these regions, or a group of them, can be assigned specific Area IDs. As soon as a user enters or leaves the target area, a position event can be triggered. SUPL 2.0 also includes provision for periodic triggering, so that location measurements can be made at periodic intervals based on the location of user. A usage scenario for this capability could be a shopper getting updates for the best deals going on in a store as soon as he or she enters a shopping mall. These updates could continue every 10 minutes until the shopper exits the mall.
  2. Reporting pattern:
    a) Batch mode Reporting: The SET reports the stored positions to network after a fixed number of measurements, or after a fixed time interval. So if a handset reports every 5 minutes, it would send 5 positions in one batch report at the end of a session.
    b) Quasi Real time: The SET can send stored position estimates at a later time, in cases where it was not able to send them at the desired time due to loss of connection.
    c) Intermediate: The SLP can allow intermediate reports in case the SET runs out of memory.
  3. Full compatibility with the latest radio access bearers such LTE , WiMAX , I-WLAN and eHRPD.
  4. Support for new delivery mechanisms for SUPL Init messages such SIP Push over ISM, UDP/IP Push
  5. Support for new positioning methods like GLONASS, Galileo, MGPS, QZSS and SBAS and for other approaches including OTDOA and Cell-ID.
  6. Provision to deliver your location to third party. A usage example could be delivery of your location to your friends so they can come and meet you at a restaurant.
  7. Retrieval of Historical positions: The SET can store historical positions, then deliver them in a batch. A usage example could be the manager of a fleet of taxis tracking where the taxi drivers have travelled in the past 10 days.
  8. Notification and Verification: The SET gets a notification and asks the user to verify whether to send their position within a particular area. For example, if the CEO of a company wanted to attend a confidential business meeting at a customer site and didn’t want anyone to know about it, he could easily protect his privacy accordingly.

So you can see that SUPL 2.0, with its rich capabilities, has the potential to dramatically enhance the location based services currently available to users. Now it’s up to the industry to provide widespread support for SUPL 2.0 and to develop new and innovative applications that can take full advantage of its features. While there are few of the enhanced applications available in the market to date, SUPL 2.0 has started garnering the attention of the wireless industry, and could well turn out to be THE NEXT BIG THING.


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