Fastrax Supports Sony GPS Chipsets with iSuite 3 SDK

3/9/2005 - Fastrax Ltd., a leading provider of open and portable OEM GPS Software Development Kit environments and programmable OEM GPS receivers, announced that Fastrax will add support for selected Sony GPS chipsets to the iSuite 3 Software Development Kit (SDK), and that this new iSuite 3 SDK version has been licensed to Sony Corporation.

The Fastrax iSuite 3 SDK addresses the challenging issues of reducing time to market in order to capture market share in the rapidly growing segments of location-aware products, as well as reducing the bill of materials cost in consumer goods and industrial tracking devices. Fastrax iSuite technology may be used to rapidly modify the features and functionality of a GPS receiver. Receiver performance can now be tailored to match the requirements of any usage scenario, support for new protocols and devices can be added easily, and power management can be tuned intelligently to match the application specification.

Additional iSuite SDK Toolkits containing pre-packaged application source code libraries will further shorten the time to market of A-GPS, wireless communication, In Vehicle Navigation sensor, data logging and DGPS-enabled location-aware products.

Lower bill of materials cost and price elasticity are key drivers for higher volumes of location-aware products. The Fastrax iSuite 3 SDK can significantly reduce the bill of materials as well as non-recurring expenses by utilizing the spare CPU and memory resources in the GPS receiver. Tracking device control and recreational product application software can now be executed on the GPS receiver baseband CPU, thus eliminating the separate controller with its memory and other supporting components from the design. Products with fewer controllers and components will have a shorter design and testing cycle, take up a smaller footprint, consume less power and, most importantly, provide a more cost-effective design.

iSuite technology enables remote on-the-fly reprogramming of GPS receiver firmware and application software. This can significantly reduce product maintenance costs and improve customer satisfaction.

"This is a very exciting development for Fastrax, as it marks the first time that a fully functional GPS SDK will be available on several platforms. It is testimony to the true openness and portability of the iSuite 3 SDK architecture and the iSys Operating System. This will allow us to offer iTrax(tm) OEM GPS receivers based on Sony chipsets to our iSuite SDK customers, thus increasing the choice of hardware platforms available to them,” said Mr. Matti Räty, President/CEO, Fastrax.

The Fastrax iSuite 3 SDK will support Sony CXD2951 and CXD2956+CXA3355 GPS chipsets and will be available during the second half of 2005.

iSuite 3 SDK users can utilize industrial-strength ARM® RealView® development and debugging tools for efficient embedded software development. The iSuite 3 SDK is designed for high portability and easy application development. These capabilities are enabled by the portable multitasking real-time operating system iSys(tm) OS, iSuite SDK APIs, and the powerful and extensible iTalk communication protocol.

The high portability and usability are demonstrated by a unique platform simulation function that allows developing, running and debugging the iSuite 3 SDK application code in a Microsoft Windows XP® environment with Microsoft Visual C++ .NET® tools, and then recompiling the same source code base for the embedded GPS processor. The option to begin development in a Microsoft Windows XP® environment with familiar development tools will allow for a short learning curve and will enable full integration between the GPS solution and PC or other host CPU-based applications with the iSuite architecture.

Microsoft Windows XP® and Microsoft Visual C++® are registered trademarks of Microsoft® Corporation. ARM® and RealView® are registered trademarks of ARM Limited.

About Fastrax Ltd
Fastrax provides industry-leading receivers and software solutions for optimal utilization of GPS (Global Positioning System) and other GNSS location services (Global Navigation Satellite Systems). Fastrax transforms GPS technologies into highly scalable iTrax and iSuite solutions with open interfaces, combined to ultra low power consumption and miniature hardware design. With industry-leading performance, Fastrax GPS receivers navigate continuously even in extreme conditions. Receivers are ideally suited to both industrial location applications and high-volume consumer products such as cell phones and sports accessories. Fastrax Engineering Services provide expert services in application design. Headquartered in Finland and founded in 1999, the company is privately owned and backed by leading venture capital investors CapMan, Eqvitec, Startupfactory and Innocap, with a strategic investment by Suunto Corporation, a subsidiary of Amer Group, a leading global supplier of sporting goods equipment. More information:

Global Positioning System (GPS) is a worldwide satellite navigation infrastructure funded and controlled by the U.S. Department of Defense, originally developed for U.S. military purposes. GPS provides satellite signals that enable GPS receivers to calculate their exact position and velocity. The GPS infrastructure has three segments. The space segment consists of 24 satellites that orbit the earth every 12 hours. The control segment consists of tracking stations located around the world, with the master control station located at Falcon Air Force Base in Colorado. The user segment consists of GPS receivers and users utilizing the information provided by the system. GPS is widely used in applications such as marine navigation.

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