GPS Buying Guide

Global Positioning System (GPS) devices have made navigation a piece of cake, whether you’re driving your car or travelling by foot. With increased competition from smartphones and built-in car apps, prices on GPS devices are also now lower than ever before. So if you’re wondering how to pick a GPS, this GPS buyers guide should give you all the information you need to know.

1. Display screen size and look

The screen size of your GPS unit will affect the price, with larger options costing more. A five-inch screen is currently the average for most devices, but you can save yourself money if you opt for something smaller. You may even find a compact model fits your needs better, particularly if you intend to fit the system to your windscreen – you don’t want the device blocking your view of the road!

2. Maps and Updates

Many GPS technologies come with a full set of maps, but due to construction works and new roads being built they won’t stay up to date forever. As such, purchasing a GPS device that has adequate map and update features can be extremely important. Check what the update policy is for your intended GPS before buying, with some models charging for updates, which can prove expensive over time.

3. Features to consider

  • Traffic data – free traffic data features are available, but they are usually lower quality than paid service
  • Bluetooth calling – enables connection to a mobile for easy hands-free calls
  • Lane guide technology
  • Text to speech capability – voices actual street names rather than generic directions
  • Multi-routing – allows you to plan multiple stops on your journey
  • Voice recognition
  • Safety camera alerts – warn you when you’re approaching speed cameras
  • POI database – search for local points of interest (POI) such as tourist attractions, restaurants and hotels

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