Apple to Install New GPS Testing Setup at Apple Park, Requests Permission from FCC

BY Mahit Huilgol

Published 7 Feb 2020

Apple has requested FCC for a license to install a GPS testing center at Apple Park. The company has made its case with an application to the Federal Communications Commission.

The GPS testing comes under the purview of radio broadcasting legislation. It is facilitated by two regulatory authorities including FCC and US National Telecommunications and Information Administration or more commonly known as NTIA. Typically companies need to apply for an Experimental License Filing if they want to use transmitters.

The application to the FCC is made by Apple systems design engineer Harsha Hanumanthaiah and is yet to be approved. Furthermore, the application lists GPS equipment as “new of modified radio station” and asks for permission to operate for up to two years. In other words, Apple would make use of GPS repeaters and transmitters in Apple Park. This would help them to test their devices. Apple is thinking about using Metro GNSS GPS repeater.

Apple has mentioned two objectives in the application.

[First] illumination of the part of the facility, located at 1 Apple Parkway, Cupertino, CA,with a GPS signal to allow for the testing and experimentation indoors for continued exploration of utilizing GPS technologies within their devices to provide innovative applications and continue to provide safe products. [Second] further design, development, and enhancement of existing GPS applications to provide greater efficiency and more effective means of utilizing GPS derived information.”

Applying for a GPS license is pretty complex. Firstly, the applicant should specify the place of installation and once done they cannot change the position of the device. In order to do so the applicant much once again apply for a license. The note shows that Apple is planning to install the device at Apple Parkway while the Metro GNSS will be housed in a second-floor office.

Companies like Apple often need to install devices for testing their cellular and GPS services. Previously, the company has applied and successfully obtained a license for testing consumer radios.

[via AppleInsider]