Skylark Offers Simple, Fast, Centimeter-Level Positioning from the Cloud for Autonomous Vehicles
Swift Navigation, a San Francisco-based tech firm building GPS technology to power a world of autonomous vehicles, today announced the release of SkylarkTM, a new, one-of-a-kind cloud-based GNSS corrections service that delivers affordable, fast, centimeter-level accuracy and eliminates the complexity of deploying and maintaining GNSS networks. Skylark was built from the ground-up for autonomy at scale and enables high-precision positioning for mass market automotive and autonomous vehicle applications.
“Configuring high-precision GPS devices for centimeter accuracy has traditionally been a bit of science project,” said Fergus Noble, Co-Founder and CTO of Swift Navigation. “Skylark breaks out of that model and operates like a utility. It is a simple, low-cost Internet data stream that provides customers with a complete high-integrity GNSS solution. Simply supply a Swift receiver with power and Internet connectivity and get real-time corrections for highly-dynamic GNSS applications.”
By moving the service to the cloud, Skylark creates a platform for high-precision GNSS navigation of autonomous vehicles, via Internet connectivity. Skylark offers a plug-and-play user experience that delivers fast convergence times measured in seconds, not minutes. It uses cutting-edge positioning algorithms to provide a continuous stream of data to individual devices from the cloud. This data stream allows for quick and robust positioning and high reliability and availability, even in challenging environments.
Swift has been working with Beta customers for over a year and is now previewing the service to all customers in six major metropolitan markets. Skylark is currently operating in the following geographies—the San Francisco Bay Area, Los Angeles, San Diego, Phoenix, Pittsburgh and Detroit—with full contiguous U.S. and global expansion underway.
Skylark allows receivers to simply connect to a constantly adapting, cloud-based model to obtain GNSS observations, eliminating dependence on base stations in each area of deployment. Skylark works seamlessly with both of Swift’s GNSS receivers—Piksi® Multi and Duro®.
Customers in preview areas with Swift receivers can sign up for Skylark and immediately start receiving corrections. Unlike existing local high-precision solutions that require dedicated radio antennas and leave users tethered to base stations, Skylark provides a simple path for customers to achieve centimeter accuracy. Legacy global high-precision solutions that offer centimeter-accuracy can require up to 30 minutes of waiting during initialization, while Skylark provides fast initialization times in seconds. The Skylark end-user experience is further simplified by an online dashboard for fast device registration and management.
“As an early Beta user of Skylark, Voyage has already experienced its ground-breaking precision and accuracy,” said Oliver Cameron, Co-Founder & CEO of Voyage, which deploys self-driving taxis in communities across North America. “Skylark and Piksi Multi are working safely and efficiently in a real-world application today at The Villages, a retirement community in San Jose, California. Swift has been a key partner on our journey to create safer, more comfortable and more affordable autonomous driving experiences for our customers. Watch our video to see Skylark in action in Voyage’s unmanned autonomous taxis.”
Users can simply sign up for Skylark online at skylark.swiftnav.com and immediately connect to existing coverage areas. The service maintains low bandwidth to save on data costs and is offered with a free 30 day trial and flexible pricing plans. Skylark’s pricing structure includes a monthly plan for $50 per device and an annual plan for $495 per device. Enterprise pricing is available for volume orders by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org. To learn more, submit a coverage request or sign up for coverage updates, visit swiftnav.com/skylark.
Swift Navigation, Inc. was founded in 2012 to make GPS positioning technology more accurate and affordable. Today Swift Navigation has gained a reputation for defining a new category of GNSS systems as the industry’s first low-cost, high accuracy real-time kinematics (RTK) receiver. Its GPS and GNSS positioning products are available at a fraction of the price of the competition and deliver 100 times better accuracy than the GPS in a cell phone. Swift Navigation’s technology benefits a multitude of industries and applications—including autonomous vehicles, unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), precision agriculture, robotics, surveying and space. With its innovation and technology honored by Inc.’s 2016 and Forbes 2017 30 Under 30 lists, Swift Navigation is enabling a world where fields farm themselves, drones fly safely and autonomous transportation can take you home.