I understand that most devices have 1 Hz refresh rate for GPS positioning. I tried to read about the actual GPS implementation but I could not figure out how often the location can be determined.

Given a custom chip, how often (Hz) the real position of the GPS receiver can be determined using only GPS signal? GPS signal chip (/bit) length is around 1 µs. Would it be possible to compute location every 2-3 chip (/bit) if given enough CPU power (that is, compute again for each time signal changes between 0 and 1)?

  • See discussion here: electronics.stackexchange.com/questions/287794/…
    – Spacedman
    Apr 12, 2018 at 11:04
  • It seems that the refresh rate is in practice mostly limited by noise from the receiving antenna which prevents syncing the signals for real. In addition, all GPS satellites transmit on the same frequency which makes the noise problems even worse. Apr 12, 2018 at 12:39

1 Answer 1


There are GPS chipsets that can easily output updates at 10 Hz (10 positions per second).

However, we must distinguish between "true" updates (meaning the positioning solution is computed 10 times per second) and interpolated updates. That depends on the actual implementation.

If you are curious about the way the GPS receiver determines its position, you can have a look at the documentation of the open source software rtklib which can perform on the PC the same calculations your GPS chipset does.

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