Space: EU's satellite navigation system Galileo reaches 1 billion smartphone users

Tomorrow, Galileo, Europe's satellite navigation system, will reach 1 billion smartphone users worldwide. This milestone coincides with the 15th anniversary of the European Global Navigation Satellite Systems Agency (GSA), the Commission's key partner in operating Galileo. Vice-President Maroš Šefčovič said: “Space really matters. What happens up there has a big impact on our lives down here. In many areas we depend on the technology, data and services that space helps deliver, such as rescue searches, smart watches, farming or plane navigation. As space is becoming a new economic frontier, driving a profound modernisation of our economies, we need to strive for Europe's global leadership and strategic autonomy. I am therefore proud that the Commission has proposed the budget of 16 billion EUR for space policy in 2021-2027.” Commissioner for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs Elżbieta Bieńkowska said: “Galileo is now providing high quality timing and navigation services to 1 billion smartphone users globally. This has been made possible by a truly European effort to build the most accurate navigation system in the world, with the support and dedication of the GSA. I am confident that our space industry will continue to thrive with more work, ideas and investment under the new EU Space Programme.” Today 95% of companies that produce smartphone chips for satellite navigation make chips that enable Galileo. The ‘1 billion users' milestone is based on the number of smartphones using Galileo sold across the world. The actual number of Galileo users is larger. In Europe, all new car models approved for the market are equipped with the eCall system, which uses Galileo to communicate the vehicle's location to emergency services. A press release is available here. Tomorrow Commissioner Bieńkowska will be in Prague, at the GSA's headquarters, to open an event celebrating this milestone and the 15th anniversary of the GSA; you can watch her speech live at 11:35 on EbS+.

 

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