(Simple tips to ensure that you get the best GPS device without burning pockets. Throughout the content some products have been linked based on the best reviews that they have received.)
If you are looking to buy a GPS, the time is certainly conducive. The segment in itself has shown tremendous improvement and with several new brands coming up, existing ones have been forced to improve their repertoire by leaps and bounds. Not to forget the fact that smartphones with navigation facilities have become serious competitors. The whole effect of all this has been that today you can easily get a standalone GPS unit at seriously low prices when compared to a few years back. Nevertheless, there are quite some points that one has to consider when looking for a great GPS unit.
Is there a need for a large display? Or getting live traffic updates is of paramount importance? And other aspects such as updates to map database or free subscriptions. Some people are also contemplating on the overall use of GPS and whether the modern smartphone is smart enough to handle all the direction related needs. So if you are someone traversing through the GPS market make note of the following points to ensure that you end up purchasing the best GPS device as per requirements and overall budget.
Fundamental Issues—-> Size of screen+ Already uploaded maps+ In-built data regarding Points of Interests
Having the right kind of gps device implies that you have the best screen size that is available in the range. If you look closely at the current market scenario the most appropriate and so called “hit” size in the market stands at 4.3 inches. Most of the models are coming in this screen size range. But one thing to note is that if you are willing to settle for a smaller screen size (say 3.5 inches) then there are huge savings that can be made in the whole purchasing process. In other words smaller screen size means lower price.
In the 3.5 inches segment Garmin nüvi 275/275T has made the mark with a number of customers appreciating the product worldwide. But if you are having real trouble due to a small screen size then it is better to opt for large screen gps units that have been unleashed by most of the prominent gps manufacturers. You can opt for 7inch screen size options such as Magellan RoadMate 9400-LM whose dazzling crystal clear screen is sure to have you mesmerized with just one look. Moreover, the display has the characteristic of being WVGA 800X480 pixels and hence you can have the assurance that not even the tiniest bit of information being displayed will be missed. An important issue to remember is that larger screen size would eat up more of the space that is there on the windshield or dashboard area of your vehicle and hence this factor should be noted so that there is no loss in driving comfort.
In the 5 inch screen size category there are two prominent options, namely, Garmin nüvi 52LM and TomTom VIA 1505M. Both of these are slim in size but are comfortable to use with the information being portrayed in the right manner.
If you are buying a gps then in most cases US maps will be there. In some products you also have other country maps such as Canada or Mexico or even options with European maps. Getting additional maps should not be a problem as most of the manufacturers have built their own map download centres so that maps downloaded on your computer can be loaded in the memory card to be used in the unit.
Some manufactures also provide the facility of free life time maps and this has to be inquired at the time of purchase. Of course, if there is an option of GPS with free lifetime maps then the fact will be stated clearly in the features column.
Buying maps on a periodic basis can be an expensive affair. Before purchasing make sure that you are aware of the system followed regarding map updates.
Modern GPS units have to have Points of Interests. This is by far the most used application in navigation devices. You need to find places such as gas stations, hotels, restaurants, best fast food area and many other bits and pieces of interesting and useful information regarding the neighborhood concerned. The effectiveness of Points of Interests feature or POI depends on the kind of database possessed by the manufacturer. Detailed databases mean that you have the tiniest bit of info immediately. The techniques regarding POIs vary from company to company. So how to know which GPS device is having the best data regarding POI? Check out actual customer reviews to solve this issue. This is a tried and tested method to know what works in your area and what’s not worth it. Just know the effectiveness of the concerned manufacturer and you can rest assured that all devices coming from the company will definitely have the POI of similar or the same effectiveness for a particular region.
Real Time Information About Traffic
Those spending considerable periods while driving can have some peace of mind by getting live traffic reports and avoid areas having traffic congestion and other problems. Besides providing the info regarding congested areas, some GPS units will also provide alternate routes to reach the destination.
For those looking out for traffic help in GPS units, a great option would be
Garmin nüvi 52LM. This has been created especially for traffic related problems and provides the best alternate routes so that the journey is completed in the shortest possible time. The best part is that traffic subscription comes free of cost and that too for a lifetime. You don’t have to pay anything to get all the detailed reports regarding traffic. The latest model Garmin Nuvi 2598LMTHD Advanced Series 5″ checks traffic updates even faster and updates comes within half a minute. So you can very understand the speed with which traffic details keep coming on the site. Garmin and TomTom are two companies that have invested huge efforts in making sure that traffic details keep coming faster and faster.
Apart from the essential features gps units also have facilities like playback options, photo display including the use of media players. A useful feature in this regard would be the ability to connect with your cell phone. A Bluetooth interface would be used to ensure that cell phone connectivity is maintained. This provides better driving comfort. However, this may be a selective feature and all phones may not be supported. To ensure that your phone is supported, check out the website of the manufacturer in question.
Why Not Use the Latest Smartphone?
With smartphones getting powerful with each passing day, using them as GPS units is also a good idea in some cases. With the surge in Android based applications in todays world, you can rest assured that smartphones as GPS units is an important alternative. Most of the GPS companies have launched their own apps for making sure that your smartphone can be effectively used as a GPS unit. Companies such as Garmin and TomTom have released apps for iPhone. Magellan too is not far behind in this matter with its latest app for iPhone. In fact smartphone navigation apps by Google is a huge industry altogether.
Do not ignore products from earlier generations since you can really get good bargains from quality manufacturers and it really depends on the actual features that you are looking for in a particular unit. However, get all the details regarding map updates before investing in a GPS from earlier generations. Great bargains are directly related to amassing high levels of information from a wide variety of sources.