Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
The GPS Innovation Alliance seeks to protect, promote and enhance the use of GPS.
The Alliance recognizes the ever increasing importance of Global Positioning System (GPS) and other Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) technologies to the global economy and infrastructure and is firmly committed to furthering GPS innovation, creativity and entrepreneurship.
A December 2012 Boston Consulting Group study commissioned by Google states that the U.S. geospatial industry has an impact on the U.S. economy that is 15 to 20 times the size of the geospatial industry, an industry that generated approximately $73 billion in revenues in 2011 and is made up of at least 500,000 high-wage jobs. The study says the 15 to 20 times economic impact ratio drives $1.6 trillion in revenue and $1.4 trillion of cost savings. Further, in what the study calls "a recognition of the many ways geo-applications and location-enabled devices are central to our daily lives," U.S. consumers place a direct annual value on geospatial services at $37 billion.
The U.S. government is the largest single user of the Global Positioning System (GPS) and has invested at least $43 billion in GPS infrastructure, equipment and services, according to a compilation of the limited number of available investment estimates. The actual total figure is almost certainly significantly higher. Current and future safety and efficiency benefits from GPS total at least $132 billion.
The Global Positioning System (GPS) enables users in the air, on land, or at sea to determine their precise location by receiving signals from distant satellites placed into orbit by the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) more than 30 years ago. The DoD continues to maintain this constellation of 24 satellites that orbit the Earth in a very predictable way, continuously transmitting signals back to Earth. GPS receivers then process the signals using trilateration and compute precise position, velocity, and timing data that helps guide a wide range of activities.
Uses of GPS include aeronautical navigation and collision avoidance, public safety dispatch and tracking, automotive navigation, precision farming, fleet management, marine navigation and harbor management, building and road construction, timing of business and financial transactions, synchronizing wireless, computing and utility networks as well as a host of other systems upon which millions of us rely every day.