Xiaomi Redmi Note 9 Pro, Redmi Note 9 Pro Max will prioritize ‘desi’ GPS for more accurate navigation

By: |
March 13, 2020 10:06 AM

Xiaomi says the navigation system/tech inside the Redmi Note 9 Pro and Redmi 9 Pro Max has been built with ‘deep’ partnership with ISRO.

It’s too early to say if Xiaomi’s new phones can make the best use of India’s NaVIC system, and if they do, how significantly it’s going to impact users.

Xiaomi’s new Redmi Note 9 Pro and Redmi Note 9 Pro Max pack Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 720G processor. The Snapdragon 720G brings, among other things, native support for India’s NAVigation with Indian Constellation or NavIC satellite positioning system developed by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO). The Snapdragon 720G, in fact, belongs to the first wave of Qualcomm mobile chips to support what may well be called the Indian GPS.

Xiaomi says the navigation system/tech inside the Redmi Note 9 Pro and Redmi 9 Pro Max has been built with ‘deep’ partnership with ISRO. Both the phones, even though they’ll support GPS (US), GLONASS (Russia), and BeiDou (China), will ‘prioritize’ the NavIC satellite positioning system in most cases, switching to those alternatives only when the going gets tough.

Xiaomi notes three key immediate advantages of relying on NavIC instead of GPS, GLONASS and BeiDou – in India. These include reliable connection, more accurate positioning, and faster time to fix.

While it’s not going to magically transform the way you use GPS in India, there will be some benefits – especially with regards to accuracy and quite possibly speed with which your mobile device will be able to latch on to a satellite signal. ISRO says, NaVIC “is designed to provide accurate position information service to users in India as well as the region extending up to 1500 km from its boundary, which is its primary service area.” NavIC satellites also use dual frequency bands (L5-band and S-band), even as GPS can only use one, to squeeze seemingly more accurate geolocation data in both urban as well as remote areas of India.

It’s too early to say if Xiaomi’s new phones can make the best use of India’s NaVIC system, and if they do, how significantly it’s going to impact users, but one thing’s certain. Xiaomi’s mainstream pricing for these phones means many people in India will be able to use this home-grown technology to experience it first-hand. While the Redmi Note 9 Pro starts at Rs 12,999, the Redmi Note 9 Pro Max starts at Rs 14,999. Watch this space for our full review of the Xiaomi Redmi Note 9 Pro and Redmi Note 9 Pro Max in the days to come.

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