The Daily Manila Shimbun


Japan expects GPS satellite to generate 2 trillion yen market

June 5, 2017

Tokyo- Japan predicts that its second satellite aimed at establishing the country's version of the Global Positioning System will generate markets of more than 2 trillion yen across a wide range of fields, such as engineering, construction, surveying and farming.
The satellite, the Michibiki No. 2, was successfully launched on Thursday, with the government planning to send up two more within this year.
A number of startups in provincial areas joined tests using the first Michibiki, launched in 2010, taking advantage of the satellite data that are available for use across the country.
Aomori-based startup Forte conducted a test of a system for pedestrians using the Michibiki in the northeastern Japan city in December 2014.
The company has already put on the market a navigation system using the conventional GPS for bicycles. Akihiro Nishikawa of Forte's development division said, "For pedestrians and bicycles, data on which side of a road they are on is also needed."
In the test, accurate location data were successfully acquired.
The company is now developing equipment to help people with visual impairments to go out without helpers. It aims to commercialize a system that guides such people using map information including steps and signals together with Michibiki-based up-to-date location data. (Jiji Press)