A car GPS unit is one of those things that you won’t be able to live without once you have one. How did society make it so long without them? How did you find your way around the block? All jokes aside, these are probably one of the most brilliant and helpful inventions in a very long time!
Not only does a GPS provide you with turn-by-turn directions, most will offer MP3 music, hands-free calling, fuel pricing, weather reports and valuable up to the minute traffic. Wouldn’t it be nice to know that there’s a traffic jam two miles ahead on the highway so you can take an alternate route? Of course, all this adds up to less stress and anxiety behind the wheel and increased safety. There are an alarming number of accidents every year that are a result of high stress levels or being lost and trying to look for street signs while a red light is being unseen.
Choosing the right One
If you haven’t started shopping for a GPS for your vehicle yet, prepare to be pretty overwhelmed. There are a lot of models and features available in an array of price ranges. You have quite a few decisions to make!
Consider Your Needs – How do you see yourself using the unit? Do you need just a basic model or would a phone and MP3 player come in handy? Keep in mind that one that your friend or neighbor loves may not fill your exact needs.
Evaluate Your Vehicle Layout – Not all GPS models are ideal for every vehicle. The monitor is typically installed either on a pedestal that extends from the dashboard or directly onto the dashboard. Depending on your car, certain units may block air vents or make passengers uncomfortable.
Vocal – While all GPS units are going to offer graphical directions, taking your eyes off the road, especially in unfamiliar territory, is very dangerous. Opt for one that provides you with vocal directions as well.
Point of Interest Data – You cannot imagine just how handy it is to have point of interest data provided to you. Whether there is an emergency and you need to know where a hospital is or you are simply looking for a good place to grab lunch along your journey, a GPS that will provide you with the information you want and need is essential.
Screen – Make sure you take a good look at the screen. Glossy varieties will often provide a glare. While some people aren’t at all bothered by this, others find it very distracting which is never good.
Hands-free – A voice activated GPS unit that is completely hands-free is recommended. Once again, the less you have to take your hands off the wheel or your eyes off the road, the better.
Tracking Accuracy – The best way to find out how accurate tracking is or if the GPS is prone to losing signal in cities with mass skyscrapers is to read reviews. This will give you a good idea if others have been pleased with the unit’s overall performance.
Thoughtful Features – Some GPS units will really outshine their competition in certain departments. A bell before it’s time to turn or the ability to ask the unit where you are receive a vocal answer are prime examples.
When you start shopping for a GPS unit, you will find that most have something unique about them. You just need to determine which features are going to best fill your needs in your budget.
Greg Schmidt is a writer for an auto warranty website that helps consumers find quality extended car warranties that deliver on their promises. You can also learn when to buy a car warranty as timing is very important.