EGNOS Receiver Consultation (September 2008)

Executive Summary

In 2009 the EGNOS correction signal will become available to all users free of charge at the point of end use, and could potentially offer numerous benefits across various consumer navigation markets.

Many devices are sold as being ‘SBAS compatible’, but what does this actually mean, and how easily would the market be able to adjust to begin delivering EGNOS functionality to users?

This document aims to build a representative illustration of the current consumer navigation markets, to assess each market’s characteristics and the likely need for the added benefits of EGNOS, and to establish how EGNOS figures into the plans of the suppliers’ product roadmaps.

The first activity of this document was a thorough survey of the consumer navigation devices currently available from the leading suppliers in the key markets of LBS/telematics, outdoor recreation, agriculture, commercial air transport, general aviation, maritime and surveying.

This was done through research into the marketing material for each supplier available publicly, as well as by cross-referencing with other market surveys to establish the level of EGNOS compatibility in each device.

The result was an extensive list of the most popular consumer navigation devices currently available, illustrating the level of EGNOS compatibility in the market.

Through combined efforts of the supplier consultation and market survey, it was determined that fewer than 10% of the devices known to be SBAS compatible were making proper use of this functionality, but that over 80% would require, at most, a software upgrade to amend this lack.

The second principal activity was a consultation with suppliers in order to assess their perception of EGNOS as a benefit to both them and end users, and their plans, if any; for making use of its functionality in the future. The suppliers were chosen so as to represent the widest possible range of markets and tiers in the supply chain, including chipset manufacturers such as NXP or Broadcomm and end-user device manufacturers such as Trimble or Garmin.

The following table summarises the results of our analysis in each of the three key market segments:

Key conclusions

Receiver suppliers are the key stakeholder group with which to interface and to gain access to the EGNOS open service market.

Whilst the vast majority of consumer devices on the market are SBAS compatible, only a small number of these actually make use of the correction signals, the rest mostly just use the additional ranging signal. However, this does mean that if required, upgrading these devices to be fully SBAS compatible would be relatively straightforward.

In the consumer market domain suppliers perceive little to no benefit from the EGNOS corrections, as the improved accuracy is beyond what is required by the users, or the operating environment introduces greater errors that negate the EGNOS accuracy improvements.

In the professional and commercial air transport domains, suppliers do perceive a benefit from EGNOS, and there is evidence of potential combined leverage to be gained through operational introduction next year.

 

Author: Helios

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