Configuring Your Device to Use GPS


If you have an external GPS receiver for your Windows Mobile device and would like to run GPS-enabled applications, there are some settings you may need to configure before your device will function properly.

Setting Up a Bluetooth Connection

If your GPS receiver connects to your Windows Mobile device via Bluetooth, you will need to configure the connection using the Bluetooth Control Panel item. The following walkthrough demonstrates how to set up this connection, but you should consult the documentation for your GPS receiver to see if any additional steps are needed.

Setup a Bluetooth Connection

  1. From the Start menu, click Settings. On the Connections tab, click the Bluetooth icon.

  2. Turn on your GPS Receiver.

  3. On the Devices tab, click Add New Deviceā€¦ The settings application will search for your device. When it is found, click Next.


  4. Your GPS receiver may require a passcode in order to create a secure connection. Consult your receiver documentation for this code. Enter the code and click Next.


  5. On the Partnership Settings screen, select Serial Port and click Next.


  6. Select the Mode tab and check the Turn on Bluetooth checkbox if it is not already checked.


  7. Select the COM Ports tab and click New Outgoing Port.


  8. Select your receiver from the Add a Device list and click Next.


  9. From the Port drop-down list, select a port number. Remember the port you choose. You will need it when you configure the GPS Intermediate Driver.


  10. Click Finish and exit the Bluetooth Control Panel item.

Configuring the GPS Intermediate Driver with the GPS Settings icon

The GPS Intermediate Driver is a software layer between a Windows Mobile application and the GPS hardware drivers. This allows applications to work with a variety of GPS hardware. The GPS Intermediate Driver uses the registry to determine what COM port should be used to communicate with the GPS hardware. The recommended way to configure the registry to work with your GPS device is the GPS Settings icon. For detailed information about the GPS Intermediate Driver and the associated registry settings, see GPS Intermediate Driver.

Using the GPS Settings icon

  1. From the Start menu, click Settings. On the System tab, click the External GPS icon. On some devices, this item has a different name. See the notes below.

  2. On the Programs tab, select any available COM port from the GPS Program Port drop-down list. The GPS data sent through the GPS Intermediate Driver is streamed to applications through this port. This should not be the same port that your GPS receiver is configured to use.


  3. On the Hardware tab, select the COM port your GPS receiver is configured to use from the GPS Hardware Port drop-down list.


  4. On the Access tab, make sure that the Manage GPS Automatically checkbox is checked.



Devices running Windows Mobile Professional include the External GPS item in the Settings panel. Devices running Windows Mobile Standard do not include this item. However, the Windows Mobile Standard SDK includes an application, called Settings.exe, that allows you to configure the GPS Intermediate Driver. The default installation location for this application is C:\Program Files\Windows Mobile 6.5.3 DTK\Tools\GPS. Copy this application to your device using ActiveSync, then click the application's icon to launch the program.


On devices running Windows Mobile Version 5.0, the icon for launching the GPS settings may be hidden. For information on showing this icon, see the Showing the GPS Settings Icon.