Nokia Beats Apple to Compass-in-Phone

Contributed by St.J. Dixon-Warren, Manager, Process Analysis, Chipworks Inc.

In a good example of Apple’s superior media hype, when the latest 3GS iPhone was launched in June, some note was made of the addition of an electronic compass to improve the accuracy of the GPS map applications. The mobile phone media appears to have completely missed commenting on the fact that the Nokia N97 smart phone also features an electronic compass, and was released some six months before the iPhone 3GS. According to iSuppli’s web teardown the iPhone contains an AKM AK8973 compass chip. Continue reading