NextNav, the leader in 3D geolocation, today launched a new program, NextNav Certified, which will improve the accuracy of vertical location by standardizing performance metrics for barometric sensors used in mobile devices.
Barometers are a relatively recent addition to most smartphones. Up to this point, they’ve been used primarily for crowdsourced weather apps and other services which don’t require highly precise measurements.
Vertical location services like NextNav Pinnacle, on the other hand, rely on quality barometric pressure readings to deliver vertical positioning with “floor level accuracy. As mobile apps start to use vertical location at scale, barometric sensors will need to produce consistent, reliable measurements.
Through the NextNav Certified program, NextNav will work directly with barometric sensor manufacturers to improve the quality of their products. By testing sensors against real world data, NextNav will help manufacturers measure performance against higher standards which will benefit a wide variety of solutions.
Certification of barometric sensor quality will also benefit device manufacturers. The NextNav Certified program will create an independent data source which device makers can use to judge the quality and reliability of barometric components.
“Certification of barometric sensors will be a critical component of the 3D location ecosystem,” said Ganesh Pattabiraman, CEO of NextNav. “With NextNav Certified, we’re setting a high bar for performance which will improve the quality of sensors and the services that use them.”
Here’s how the NextNav Certified program works. NextNav works with the sensor manufacturer to develop a test plan specific to the particular sensor model. Tests are performed by the sensor manufacturer and the results are shared with NextNav. NextNav validates the performance data to ensure it meets certain minimum criteria. Once the performance thresholds are met, the sensor is officially certified.
Once a sensor is NextNav Certified, test data can be shared with device manufacturers, wireless carriers, and other stakeholders. NextNav also lists the sensor model on its public roster of certified components. NextNav and the company will also issue a joint press release. The company will also receive a NextNav Certified badge to display on its website.