3 Essential Things to Know About your Car’s GPS

Thanks to technology, navigation has become quite a bit easier. Instead of relying on maps and directions from friendly gas station attendants, most people are using GPS, global positioning satellite systems, to help them find their way around the world.

How Does GPS Work?

The GPS system contains a number of satellites in space, along with control segments on the ground. The device that you have installed in your vehicle, or the portable device you carry with you is a receiver that gathers the satellite signals. These signals help to pinpoint your position in nearly any location on the planet.

How Accurate Is GPS?

The system that the United States has in place is very accurate when it comes to finding precise locations. The system is accurate within about four meters. Many devices are even more accurate than this. The modern GPS is also reliable in more locations, including parking lots, buildings, and rural areas.

Choosing a Portable System

While many vehicles today have GPS built right into them, that’s not the case with all vehicles. You may find that you need to have a portable system that you can take along with your. Many people are simply having their smartphones pull double duty and to work as a GPS. Those who are buying an actual GPS system should make sure that they stick to some of the bigger brands on the market including Garmin, TomTom, and Magellan.

When you are choosing a GPS system, it is important to consider everything that the system offers. How often does the device update? Does it work with Bluetooth. You should also consider whether the GPS is able to “speak” and offer voice directions, as these are far more convenient than on screen directions.

As mentioned, many vehicles today have a GPS built into them. Other drivers may choose to have one installed later. It is important to make sure the system stays updated, and that it is in good working condition. If there is an issue with the GPS, you may need to talk with a specialist about getting it fixed. Sometimes though, it’s just a simple electrical or software issue.


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