Toshiba Introduces Information-Gathering Terminal Equipped With GPS (GPS Reporter) To Japanese Market

7 November, 1996

TOKYO -- Toshiba Corporation has commercialized the GPS Reporter for Japan's market, an information-gathering terminal equipped with GPS (Global Positioning System) for gathering still pictures and sound information, in the event of a disaster etc., and timely data transmission enriched with GPS position information. Use of the GPS Reporter provides the receiving party with highly accurate field information and makes possible automatic construction of a database. Toshiba began accepting orders from domestic customers for the GPS Reporter on November 1, 1996, and shipment will start in April 1997 at a price of 1.5 million yen (Sender terminal only, excluding tax). Annual sales for the initial year is targeted at 300 units.

Data is transmitted enriched with position information. The location where the information is gathered is automatically indicated by a symbol on the map- software screen at the receiver terminal. To retrieve picture and sound information, the mark is clicked.

The GPS Reporter consists of a digital still camera with a microphone and a monitor, a GPS device, a computer for confirmation and storage of position data, and a cellular telephone. The GPS Reporter is carried on the user's back. It is extremely convenient to operate in the field. A picture is taken and transmitted simply by pressing the camera shutter.

*1: It is necessary to construct a dedicated system at the receiver side according to the needs.

Background and Objectives of the Development

    In the event of a large-scale disaster, it is important to swiftly grasp the situation in the disaster-stricken area in order to facilitate evacuation and the prevention of secondary effects of the disaster. At present, municipal disaster prevention centers are seeking a system enabling swift collection of image and sound information and construction of a database so that field information can be grasped precisely.

    By developing and commercializing the GPS Reporter, Toshiba has achieved two crucial objectives: easy operation in the field enabling efficient collection of information in the event of a large-scale disaster; and automatic database construction by combining the GPS function and the receiving party's dedicated map software. Application of the GPS Reporter is by no means limited to disasters. It is also suitable for routine inspection and database construction respecting waterworks, sewage systems, facilities of electric-power and gas utilities, etc.

Main Features of the GPS Reporter

  1. Operation such as pen input and connection of a PC card is unnecessary, and simply by pressing the shutter of the digital still camera, input of image and sound information, recording of the coordinates of the position and the time at which the information is gathered, and data transmission are executed automatically.

  2. The coordinates of the position of the GPS device are transmitted and indicated by a symbol on the screen of the dedicated map software at the receiver terminal. The symbol is clicked to retrieve picture and sound information.

  3. Each time the gathered information is transmitted, a database is constructed automatically and quickly at the receiver terminal.

  4. A digital still camera, a microphone, a GPS device, a cellular telephone, and a computer for confirmation and storage of position data are combined and stored in an environment-resistant case which is carried on the user's back. Thus, operability in the field is excellent.

Major Specifications

Control Part
Main processor Pentium processor (equivalent to 100MHz)
Main memory 16MB (standard) expandable to 64MB
OS Windows 95

GPS Antenna
Pick-up Accuracy Within less 150 meter

Camera Unit
No. of Picture Elements 250,000 elements
Display Color LCD Display

Transmission Method
Cellular telephone 9600bps

Information in the press releases, including product prices and specifications, content of services and contact information, is current on the date of the press announcement,but is subject to change without prior notice.