Apple, which just launched its new iPhone 15 series, has adopted the Indian satellite navigation system NavIC for its high-end iPhone 15 Pro and the iPhone 15 Pro Max models for location-based services.
The company mentioned in the tech specifications that iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max now support the homegrown NavIC system, an alternative to the Global Positioning System (GPS).
“Precision dual-frequency GPS (GPS, GLONASS, Galileo, QZSS, BeiDou and NavIC),” read the tech specifications under the location category.
This is the first time the iPhone maker has extended support for NavIC to its iPhone models.
So far, GPS, owned by the US government, has been one of the most popular satellite-based navigation systems in India and the world.
India is now trying to push its own navigation system to reduce reliance on GPS and other systems.
Currently, some smartphone makers like Xiaomi, OnePlus and Realme already support NavIC on some of their phones.
India aims to expand NavIC coverage globally and it wants tech companies to make their devices compatible with the new standard before then.
To meet the positioning, navigation and timing requirements of the nation, ISRO established a regional navigation satellite system called Navigation with Indian Constellation (NavIC).
NavIC was erstwhile known as Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS).
Currently there are eight first generation NavIC satellites in orbit. A senior ISRO official recently told IANS that out of the eight NavIC satellites in orbit, four are functional for navigation services and four others are messaging services.
In May, India successfully put into orbit the first of its second generation navigation satellite NVS-01.
NavIC coverage area includes India and a region up to 1,500 km beyond Indian boundary, according to the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO).
NavIC SPS signals are interoperable with the other global navigation satellite system (GNSS) signals namely GPS, Glonass, Galileo and BeiDou.