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Use a high-accuracy receiver

A high-accuracy GNSS receiver can be used with any project with no prior configuration. Use the following workflow to use a high-accuracy receiver with ArcGIS QuickCapture:

Choose a receiver

QuickCapture can use the GPS that's built into your device, or you can add an external GPS receiver to obtain high-accuracy data. There are many GPS receivers available; however, not all of them work directly with QuickCapture. To use a GPS receiver with QuickCapture, the receiver must support the output of NMEA sentences.

To improve the accuracy of your positions, consider using a GPS receiver that supports differential corrections. If you are using an iOS device, you must also choose one of the GPS receivers supported on iOS. While Esri doesn't publish a list of supported GPS receivers for Android or Windows, a list of receivers used in testing on Android and Windows is provided.


Most high-accuracy GPS receivers support the NMEA sentences that QuickCapture uses; however, it's recommended that you check whether your receiver supports these NMEA sentences in the receiver's user manual before you try to connect it to QuickCapture.

NMEA support

NMEA 0183 is the data specification standard that QuickCapture uses to communicate with GPS receivers. NMEA messages contain lines of data called sentences. QuickCapture derives GPS information such as latitude, longitude, height, and fix type by reading specific sentences in NMEA messages.

QuickCapture supports NMEA 4.00 and 4.10. It can read the following NMEA sentences:

  • GGA: Time, position, and fix-related data
  • GSA: GNSS DOP and active satellites
  • GSV: GNSS satellites in view
  • RMC: Recommended minimum specific GNSS data
  • VTG: Course over ground and ground speed
  • GST: GNSS pseudorange error statistics

If QuickCapture receives GST sentences, which contain accuracy information for a particular coordinate, it uses them to determine accuracy. By default, the horizontal and vertical accuracy numbers are specified in root mean square (RMS). The level of confidence using RMS is 63 percent to 68 percent for horizontal accuracy, and 68 percent for vertical accuracy.

Estimated accuracy

If QuickCapture doesn't receive a GST sentence from a GPS receiver but does receive a GSA sentence, QuickCapture estimates accuracy using horizontal dilution of precision (HDOP) and vertical dilution of precision (VDOP). The estimated horizontal accuracy is calculated by multiplying HDOP by 4.7, and the estimated vertical accuracy is calculated by multiplying VDOP by 4.7.

Differential corrections

To improve the accuracy of your positions, consider using a GPS receiver that supports differential corrections. Differential correction technology further improves accuracy by using reference stations, which are also known as base stations. A reference station is another GPS receiver that is established on a known location. The reference station estimates its location based on satellite signals and compares this estimated position to the known position. The difference between these positions is applied to the estimated GPS position calculated by your GPS receiver, also called the rover, to get a more accurate position. Your receiver must be located within a certain distance of the reference station for differential corrections to occur. Differential corrections can be applied in real time in the field or when postprocessing data in the office.

Differential corrections can be provided by public or commercial sources. One of the most widely used and publicly accessible real-time correction sources is the Satellite-based Augmentation System (SBAS), which is also commonly referred to as the Wide Area Augmentation System (WAAS) in the United States. It is free to use SBAS, but your GPS receiver must support it. Using commercial correction services typically requires a subscription and may also require purchasing a particular type of GPS receiver that can receive these correction signals. See the Differential GPS Explained article in ArcUser magazine for more information.

GPS receivers supported on iOS

To directly connect a Bluetooth receiver with an iOS device, the receiver must be part of the MFi program as well as support the output of NMEA sentences. The following receivers can be used directly with QuickCapture on supported iOS devices.


To determine the version of firmware your GPS receiver uses, pair your receiver with your device, open your device's General > About settings, and tap the name of your paired receiver.

  • Bad Elf GNSS Surveyor and GPS Pro+, GPS Pro, and GPS for Lightning Connector

    The GNSS Surveyor and GPS Pro+ require firmware version 2.1.40 or later. The GPS Pro requires firmware version 2.0.90 or later. The GPS for Lightning Connector requires firmware version 1.0.24 or later.

  • Eos Arrow Lite, Arrow 100, Arrow 200, and Arrow Gold—Firmware version 2.0.251 or later
  • Garmin GLO and GLO 2

    The GLO requires firmware version 3.00 or later and the GLO 2 requires firmware version 2.1 or later.

  • Juniper Systems Geode
  • Leica Zeno GG04 plus—Processor board firmware version 1.0.20 or later

GPS receivers tested on Android and Windows

QuickCapture works with any receiver supported on Android or Windows that outputs NMEA 0183 sentences. While the development team doesn't certify any device, the following is a list of devices it has used:


This is not a comprehensive list of all devices that work with QuickCapture.

  • Bad Elf GNSS Surveyor, GPS Pro, and GPS Pro+
  • Eos Arrow Lite, Arrow 100, Arrow 200, and Arrow Gold
  • Garmin GLO¹, Garmin GLO
  • Geneq SxBlue II and SxBlue III²
  • Juniper Systems Geode
  • Leica GG03¹, GG04, and Zeno 20¹
  • Trimble R1, R2, R8s¹, and R10¹

    The Trimble GNSS Status app (Windows or Android) is required to receive corrected positions with R1 or R2. On Android, you also need the Trimble GNSS Direct app.

    For the Trimble R1 receiver on Windows, QuickCapture can't access differential GPS fixes with RTX. However, QuickCapture can identify the location with autonomous GPS fixes, as well as SBAS corrected and local base station corrected locations via NTRIP.

    For the Trimble R2 receiver on Windows, QuickCapture can't access locations with RTX or local base station corrected locations via NTRIP. QuickCapture can only access autonomous GPS fixes and SBAS corrected locations.

    The development team has had issues pairing the Trimble R10 with Samsung Galaxy S5 and S7 devices.

¹Android only; ²Windows only

Configure your receiver

Not all receivers that support the output of NMEA sentences are configured to do so out of the box. Refer to the device's user manual for instructions on how to configure it to output NMEA sentences.

Connect your receiver to your device

QuickCapture supports receivers integrated into devices as well as external receivers connected via Bluetooth. If your receiver is integrated into the device, proceed to the next section. If you are using an external receiver, follow these steps to connect it to your device:

  1. Verify that your GPS receiver is compatible with QuickCapture.

    Your receiver must support the output of NMEAsentences and be configured to do so. See Choose a receiver and Configure your receiver. These instructions must be completed before connecting the receiver to QuickCapture.

  2. Turn on your receiver and place it near your device or computer.

    Go to your device's Bluetooth settings and view the available devices. Wait for your receiver's name to appear in the list.


    If your Bluetooth receiver doesn't appear in the list, make sure it isn't connected to another device.

    • To disconnect your receiver from an iOS device, in the device's Bluetooth settings, tap the information icon next to the receiver, tap Forget This Device, and tap Forget Device.
    • To disconnect your receiver from an Android device, in the device's Bluetooth settings, tap the settings icon next to the receiver, and tap Unpair or Forget.
    • To disconnect a Bluetooth receiver from a Windows device, in the device's Bluetooth settings, tap the receiver's name, tap Remove device, and tap Yes.
  3. Tap the receiver's name to pair it with your device.

Configure QuickCapture to use the receiver

You can configure more than one receiver to use with QuickCapture. You can customize the name, alerts, antenna height, and altitude options for each receiver. These settings are saved on your device for subsequent use.

  1. Open QuickCapture.
  2. On the main menu, select Settings.
  3. On the settings menu, select Location Provider.
  4. Select Add Provider.
  5. From the list of external receivers, select the receiver to which you want to connect.
    • The default location provider type is External receiver of type Bluetooth. The External receivers list displays all receivers that are connected to your device but are not yet added to QuickCapture. On desktop devices, you can also browse USB-connected devices. To change the type of devices that are listed, disable device discovery, check or uncheck the type of external receivers to search, and reenable discovery.
    • You can also connect to receivers that are available on a network. Select Network connection, enter the host name and port, and select Add.

Once a receiver is selected, it connects, and the Settings page appears. You can check or modify the receivers settings here, or select the back arrow to return to the Location page, where you can browse other configured providers, add a new provider, or close the QuickCapture settings.