The range of options and variety of brands and models can make choosing a GPS system a little confusing. Price is an obvious consideration but so are the built in features and available options, how and where you intend to use your GPS and what kind of directional assistance would be most helpful for your particular needs. When deciding which GPS product is right for you, considering the answers to some of the following questions will help you navigate through the maze of available products and find the right one for your needs. |
- Are you looking for basic GPS navigation for you car to help get you around town or something with a few more features that would be helpful on trips?
- Are you looking for a GPS system with more versatility? Perhaps a unit that could be used in a car and/or outdoors hiking, biking or sightseeing?
- Are you looking for a feature packed system that provides spoken navigation and a variety of additional information, traffic and weather, compatibility with Bluetooth devices XM radio and more?
- Are you looking for activity specific GPS capabilities for use during hunting, fishing/marine use, or fitness training?
The following information is offered as a guide to assist you in determining which product is right for you. It is not a review of any specific brand or model. The brands mentioned are only used as examples of the kind of GPS being discussed. Keep in mind as you consider your needs that many GPS systems designed for use in a car can easily be carried in a pocket, purse or pack and used to navigate on foot. And likewise, many handheld products can be mounted in a car, boat, ATV or on a bicycle and when installed with street map software, can be used to navigate on streets and highways.
GPS products with basic capabilities will be able, literally, to get you from point A to point B by utilizing one or more saved "Way points". These type devices do not offer mapping capability. You can think of way points as pebbles left behind you as you make your way. To return, you move back along your route, collecting the pebbles you left to mark the way. Basic models function in much this way, dropping the "pebbles" for you and pointing the way back to them to lead you home. Examples for use of this type GPS might be saving the location of your parked car at a crowded shopping mall or sports facility when you arrive so you could easily find your way back when you are ready to leave. Or instead of a parked car you might save the location of your campsite and points of interest along a hike and then easily navigate back at the end of the day.
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