back to article Santa brings 3 more sats for Putin's GPS rival

Russia's rival to the American Global Positioning System (GPS) satnav constellation successfully launched three more satellites on Xmas day, which will bring it to a total of 18 operational spacecraft. Mirroring the popularity of consumer GPS-enabled devices in the West, Russian developers demonstrated GLONASS based car satnav …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    less reliance on US sats ?

    Hopefully the systems will be interoperable with US owned satelites.

    With more and more stuff getting GPS capabilities having to rely on US systems (access to which could be withdrawn on a whim) is worrying.

    Russian competition could shake up this market considerably.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Gates Halo

    Anonymous Coward lol

    the other Anonymous Coward doesnt have a clue what hes talking about! He should read wikipedia first lol

  3. aidan worth


    and you think that the kremlin will not reduce/disable availability when it wants to?

    they will, but not a word will be mentioned about this until it happens..

    remember that Putin is former KGB...

  4. Andrew Moore

    GNSS systems

    The story here is not that the Russians have GLONASS but they have just added a further 3 satellites to it- we have kit that runs both systems for the past 4 years and my first job in the New Year is to upgrade the local GNSS reference system to receive both GPS and GLONASS (and Gallileo should it ever arrive).

    And just a clarification to the article- GLONASS is a GNSS, not THE GNSS (or at least it will be in 2010)- GPS is also a GNSS. GPS just refers to the NavStar system (the american one). Expect to see the acronym GPS being dropped in the near future in favour of GNSS

  5. BoldMan


    You are making fun of a previous poster then trying to claim Wikipedia as an authoritative source? Oh the irony!

  6. Anonymous Coward

    Anonymou Coward

    lordy, how many of us are there then? Explains why I keep contradicting myself

  7. Claire Rand


    hand held unit that can talk to either system?

    or will some sort of licensing deal rule this out? basically meaning carry two of them (or in the case of a missile build both in)

    then yes either side can lock it out in an area, but if they don't agree one or the other will work.

  8. Matt Bryant Silver badge

    Switch off?

    Considering that if the Yanks turn off GPS (or the Russians theirs) it will be in the event that you or those near you have been designated an enemy worthy of serious military action, I think you'll have a lot more serious things to worry about other than your in-car navigation! Please loosen up your tinfoil hats and let some blood to your oxygen-starved brains, I can't recall a single incident of the US actually ever having turned off GPS for UK users. In fact, due to the special relationship, it is highly likely that if the UK ended up in a shooting war with another US allie (say Argentinia again), the US would still favour us over the opposition and still give us GPS use. The Galileo proponents have talked up the US control of NavStar from the start with absolutely no basis in reality, and the tinfoil-adorned sheep have happily bleated on about it ever since.

    On the other hand, I expect much more threats and controls on the GLONASS system, much in the same way as Putin has used the threat of withdrawing oil and gas supplies to his neighbours. Anyone that signed up exclusively to the GLONASS option would need their head checking unless they are already in the US naughty list (like Iran, North Korea, and other cuddly states).

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    The first Anon superhero got his information from Wikipedia in the first place!

    PS we are legion.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Black Helicopters

    Russian competition?

    Do really think the US or Rusia are concerned about the "market" for their "products"? No one is launching multi-billion dollar systems for which they see no return in capital so that civilians can have SatNav in their cars. This is a tool of strategic military importance, and although both sides like to highlight happy civilian uses, these systems exist to help missiles get to where they are going, not people.

    And as for licensing? I doubt any military is very concerned about licensing, simply for the reasons stated above. The EU is the only one who seems to think there was any commercial possibilities for GNSS, and obviously the private sector didn't agree.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    But ladies and gentlemen...

    It's Russian, you know damn well it's going to have every bar, pub and distiller pin pointed down to the millimeter. That's progress, damn it! Besides, I'll bet there's an AI module that will act as an interpreter or aide for drunk drivers. Something not deemed politically correct for America...

  12. Gwyn Kemp-Philp
    Black Helicopters

    Wanna buy a slightly used satellite?

    With multiple GNSS systems in use we will have a new early warning system in place...

    Expect then to be serious when they start shooting down each others satellites. China's already been practicing.

    If they don't - then they are just joshing, you can go back to sleep lol.

    Meanwhile, they will be launching GNSS traffic cops in 2110 to deal with all the congestion.

  13. Chris Braisby


    I'm sure that if needs be either system could be either jammed or fed false signals resulting in the same effect.

  14. Robert E A Harvey

    Dual systems

    I used a Racal navigation system in 2002 that used both navstar and glonass birds in one constallation. The resultant position was no better than each on their own, but hey, the customer was impressed by a 18-satellite fix.

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    I think the Russian system would be more accurate than the US, with the history of the US shooting its own as well as its Allies in "accidental" friendly fire.

    The quality of the US government controlled staff or equipment is not to be trusted, even by their own.

  16. amanfromMars Silver badge

    @ but ladies and gentlemen

    "Besides, I'll bet there's an AI module that will act as an interpreter or aide for drunk drivers. Something not deemed politically correct for America..."

    The AIMissing Link for Politically InCorrectionable America, AC. A Continent in EMotional Crisis. Virtual Credibility Disappearing.

    Go West, Jung Man, to the East for ITs Rising Sun Performance.

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