So I noticed that when I click the "My Location" button on the Vodafone Mobile Broadband software, it's pretty good at finding my location (I'd say within 5 miles when I'm inside)... how exactly is this being done?
When I use sites like http://www.whatismyipaddress.com the IP address can't be used to gather my location, as it reports I'm in Leeds somewhere (I'm guessing this is where the APN is based?).
I'm using the 3G dongle for a business project, and it would be very useful to get a semi-accurate geo-position using the dongle instead of having to buy (and mount) a GPS module for our system!
Tom - positioning here appears to be done on the basis of the cell site location.
From the FAQs on "MyLocation" here, it is not clear whether it is based on the cell site triangulation, or simply based on the position of the cell to which the device is connected, although it would seem to be the latter:
Q: How does this work? A: My Location can use your "cell tower" location when on a Vodafone network to determine your location
Q: How accurate is My Location? A: The accuracy of My Location depends on the distance the cell tower is covering. For example the accuracy in Urban areas is within 700metres with less accuracy in rural areas. If My Location is using GPS then this is usually within 10 metres
Q: How do I know the accuracy of my location? A: My Location will provide a red radius when the cell tower is known which covers the expected distance of the cell and by nature the expected accuracy
Q: Will My Location work with indoor building cell towers or the Vodafone Sure Signal product? A: In building cell towers or the Vodafone Sure Signal product will cause my location to not correctly detect your location unless you have successfully acquired a GPS location within your GPS enabled and supported Netbook
Q: Will My Location work whilst I am roaming internationally? A: Yes, My Location will work when roaming onto a Vodafone owned network.
However, even this mechanism may be sufficient for your needs?