Must Have Checklist – Choosing a GPS Device

15 Smart Uses for a GPS-Enabled Device

1. Drive yourself and others with increased safety and more confidence

2. Install in your business' delivery vans to make efficient use of time and gas

3. Hop in the SUV and drive the kids straight to a new friend's birthday party – hassle free

4. Use on your boat (or a friend's) to locate a favorite saltwater fishing spot

5. Tuck in your backpack when on a bike ride to try a different route home

6. Find the nearest diner on a road trip in your RV

7. Locate the nearest home improvement store on the day you move into your new house

8. Carry in your pocket to keep your bearings while on a nature walk

9. Avoid being the last one to arrive at the 8 am meeting

10. Get roadside assistance with the touch of a button

11. Make phone calls from your car when your cell phone battery dies

12. Swing by and get some roses at the nearest florist on your way to pick up your date

13. Check out that excellent Mexican restaurant your sister mentioned she ate at last week

14. Drive the rental car to Las Vegas from Chicago in record time

15. Spend more time selling to clients and less time on the road

Relying on technology to help you find your way may seem like a luxury. But in fact, using GPS can provide you with so many benefits that you will likely be able to afford more luxury. A GPS-enabled device such as a portable GPS unit or cell phone can save you time, gas and money while preventing heads – whether you purchase it for business or personal use.
Global Positioning Systems communicate your current location to satellites in orbit, which then feed navigation information to the GPS-enabled device in your car, delivery van, RV, boat, semi-tractor trailer, ATV backpack or jacket pocket.

Types of GPS-enabled devices include:

o Units for in-dash installation in a vehicle

o Portable full-featured units

o Portable no-frills models

o Handheld devices for hikers, bikers and tourists on foot

o PDAs with integrated receivers or equipped with add-on adapters

o Cell phones

Features to Consider

New, clever enhancements are being made to GPS systems every day. Although the following features are common, they show up in many combinations, so be sure to compare products thoroughly. Take the time to review ratings carefully, too – there's nothing like having a GPS to know how well it works.

o Voice guided driving directions (so drivers do not have to look at the display screen)

o If installed or mounted in a vehicle, drivers should only use the touch screen when at a stop. For your driving safety, some GPS units will "lock down" when the vehicle is in motion; others accept voice commands.

o Integrated Bluetooth for handsfree calling

o Integration with AAA or other roadside assistance service

o Option to store favorite locations

o Ability to search for and route to points of interest as well as by address

o Option to choose different forms of navigation (fastest route, most use of highways, etc.)

o Integration with data about current traffic conditions

o Up-to-date and comprehensive information about roads and locations

o Latitude and longitude coordinates, and detailed street maps

o Ability to connect the device to a computer or insert a DVD / CD and update maps and data

o Automatic rerouting when you veer off course

o Touchscreen controls

o Music and picture storage

o Vehicle-mount kit (usually a powerful suction cup); keep in mind that to work effectively, a GPS device's antenna must have an unobstructed view of the sky

Who Should Buy a GPS-Enabled Device?

Investing in GPS may be a smart move if you:

o Have a company that depends on delivery, transit, or business travel

o Are new to the area

o Are sooner to taking wrong turns or losing your bearings

o Like to know in advance what driving action you will need to take

o Tend to run late

o Live in an area that is not remote, heavily wooded or an urban jungle

o Spend a lot of time on the road or traveling by bike or on foot

o Get stressed when driving

o Enjoy off-roading or exploring new terrain

o Are planning a road trip or to rent a car in an unfamiliar location

If you are intrigued by GPS but not sure you want to put a lot of money into your first purchase, consider buying a refurbished model. These devices have been returned to the manufacturer, often for minor problems, and restored to the same quality standards as new units. You may be able to save up to 50% on models that have been discontinued or refurbished.


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