GPS, BeiDou, GLONASS, Galileo: A Quick Overview

GPS, BeiDou, GLONASS, Galileo: A Quick Overview

Are you aware of the terms GPS, BeiDou, GLONASS, Galileo? Well, today is your lucky day! In this article, I am going to give you a quick overview of these four navigational terms.

Car GPS System

  1. GPS

GPS is a short abbreviation for Global Positioning System. It is a satellite-based navigational system owned by the US government which consists of 24 satellites orbiting around the Earth.

Together these satellites provide navigational and positioning services to the US military and third-party vendors like Google and Apple.

In recent times, GPS has become the backbone for most of the Apps that you use on your smartphone. Whether you want to travel or need to search for a particular location, we use GPS to accomplish our task.

  1. BeiDou

BeiDou is a Chinese owned satellite navigational system that offers navigation services to countries located in the Asia- Pacific region. It comprises 19 satellites which are currently healthy and orbiting in outer space.

Companies like Xiaomi, Honor, and OPPO use BeiDou as a navigation system alongside GPS.

BeiDou provides accurate location tracking up to 10 meters for civilians and 10 cms for the military.


GLONASS stands for Globalnaya Navigazionnaya Sputnikovaya Sistema or Global Navigation Satellite System. As the name suggests, the Russian Government owns GLONASS.

It provides an alternative to GPS and is the second GPS navigation system in the world that gives coverage globally.

As of now, there are 24 satellites of GLONASS orbiting around the Earth. GLONASS performs better in areas with higher altitudes thus Russia is the best place for GLONASS to operate.

GLONASS has a horizontal positioning accuracy between 5-10 meters and 15 meters for vertical positioning accuracy.

  1. Galileo

The European Union (EU) owns the Galileo or global navigation satellite system (GNSS) which went live in 2016. As the EU did not want to depend on America, they invented Galileo.

Galileo’s positioning service IS more accurate at higher altitudes in comparison to any other satellite navigational service.

Galileo provides accurate location tracking up to 1 meter for civilians and 1 cm for the military. Currently, there are 24 satellites in space orbiting the atmosphere.

*Content Source: Wikipedia.

Further Reading: How to set up AMP on a WordPress site.


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Yagnesh Contractor

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