I'm not sure if you are aware but there have been recent warnings that sat navs may start to fail and will stop working all together by 2010.
May 22, 2009...3:34 pm
Are all sat-navs going to fail in 2010?
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Sat-nav systems could become defunct next year, according to a report from the U.S. Government.
It reckons a lack of investment and development into the U.S. Air Force’s GPS (Global Positioning System) will cause the failure.
But the U.S. Air Force said sat-navs will carry on working as normal. So who’s right?
I’ve been meaning to buy a sat-nav for some time due to my girlfriend’s “interesting” map-reading skills.
There’s no doubt reading a map can be more rewarding, but the convenience of using a sat-nav is a welcome one.
But recent claims from the U.S. Government’s Accountability Office (GAO) concerned me slightly. It warned the 20-year-old Navstar GPS system is in urgent need of an upgrade.
The GAO criticised the U.S. Air Force Space Command for offering the service for free, and said the lack of investment meant both military and civilian systems could be affected.
Apparently the GPS system overran its budget by £562 million and the next satellite is due to go into orbit in August 2009 – almost two years behind schedule.
“It is uncertain whether the Air Force will be able to acquire new satellites in time to maintain current GPS service without interruption,” the GAO said.
But the U.S. Air Force Space Command left a comment on Twitter
declaring there is nothing to worry about.
“Be assured, the issue is not whether GPS will stop working. There’s only a small risk we will not continue to exceed our performance standard.
“Since 1995, GPS has never failed to exceed performance standards,” the U.S. Air Force Space Command said.
Drivers across the world will be affected if sat-navs fail to operate in 2010.
If the satellites do go down, a new EU sat-nav system called ‘Galileo’ could be in big demand when it goes worldwide in 2013.
Until then, I’m going to put my faith in the U.S. Air Force and take the plunge with a sat-nav.
This does worry me, because I have had simliar problems with my work's sat nav, even on clear sunny days.