I realize the blue arrow on Google map, as you rotate the phone around, it will rotate as well. May I know how does it know the north south direction? It works too even my GPS is turned off.


GPS doesn't understand static direction at all; it can only infer direction from motion. But there is an electronic compass inside the phone as well as the GPS.

You might want to download the "GPS Status + Tools" program from the Market; you can see detailed status information for both the GPS and the compass.

  • To add...there's a magnetometer within almost all Android phones. This also allows your device to act like a metal detector. Quite a few apps in the market that enhance this functionality. – Sparx Jul 3 '11 at 11:26

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.