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Top 10 GPS Ideas And Methods – Get essentially the most from your TomTom, Garmin, Magellan, or different GPS gadget by learning how you can velocity satellite tv for pc lock, ship maps from your PC, create POIs, and extra from our GPS professional.

With international positioning system (GPS) gadgets more popular and affordable than ever, here are a number of the greatest methods to get extra out of your private navigator. What follows are 10 ideas and tips, along with some bonus pointers for house owners of the two most popular manufacturers, Garmin and TomTom.

Pace Up Satellite tv for pc Lock

If you turn on your GPS for the primary time, it downloads almanac info from GPS satellites. No, this isn’t the Farmer’s Almanac, although it does have to do with the place of objects within the sky. In this case, your unit is receiving knowledge about the place GPS satellites are situated out of your present location. Having this info on your unit will velocity satellite lock, also referred to as time-to-first-fix (TTFF).

To download this information effectively, go away your GPS powered on and underneath an open sky, motionless, for 20 minutes. Ideally, you’ll do that the first time you turn the unit on, however it may be finished any time after as nicely. It is an particularly good first step to take for those who notice satellite acquisition taking longer than normal.

Another time you possibly can pace satellite tv for pc lock is whenever you hop in a rental automobile following a cross-country flight. Many GPS models have a “new location” choice on the satellite tv for pc display screen menu. Use this once you’ve travelled more than 100 miles or so to give your unit an concept of what part of the world you are in, rushing up satellite lock within the process.

On some items the new location characteristic will come up mechanically if satellite acquisition is taking too long. For a greater understanding of the technology behind GPS, try Garmin’s GPS Guide For Beginners.

Deter GPS Theft

GPS units are a few of the hottest gadgets round, and I do imply hottest in each sense of the word. Smash and seize thieves can steal your GPS in less time than even the fastest unit can lock onto satellites, so to keep your GPS off eBay, and your car’s windows intact, listed below are a number of simple precautions:

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Take your unit with you everytime you leave your automobile.

Take away the suction cup mount from the windshield and wipe away any telltale marks (a microfiber material works nice for this). Better but, ditch the suction mount altogether and purchase a friction mount. These weighted mounts grip practically any form sprint and are simple to cover under the seat or in the glove compartment. They don’t fall off the windshield or depart suction cup marks behind.

This is my favorite sort of GPS mount. I can easily seize your complete mount/GPS assembly and place it on the passenger seat before I pull right into a parking zone, making certain that no one sees me disconnecting and hiding my GPS.

Update Firmware

Firmware is software program that is embedded in your GPS. The frequency of firmware releases for a specific model varies according to the producer; some provide ongoing support higher than others. Firmware updates can fix system glitches and make your GPS function more smoothly. And a few firmware updates actually add new features and capabilities.

Updates are fairly painless. They usually contain connecting your GPS to a computer (most receivers come with a mini-USB cable) and operating the firmware update file. Garmin has simplified the process with its WebUpdater application, which can check for new updates, or you’ll be able to go to the Web page for a listing of the current firmware version for your model. You will discover updates for Magellan units on its support web page, while TomTom updates are actually handled through the TomTom HOME software.

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There’s always the possibility that a main bug will make its approach into a brand new firmware release. One approach to resolve that is to roll your unit again by installing an older version of firmware. Thankfully, GPSInformation.org has an archive web page of older firmware, for this very cause.

Get Specific With Your Instructions

Many mid-range GPS receivers offer text-to-speech, permitting them to call out the street names of upcoming turns. This function allows you to hear “turn left on Oak Avenue” rather than just “turn left in 200 ft.” Yet text-to-speech only works if you choose the proper voice in the unit’s setup menu; it does not at all times default to the right setting. So be certain you’re getting every little thing you paid for. Search for voice selections that say “TTS” or “computer.”

Update Your Maps

For those who purchase one of the prime brands of GPS, you’ll be supplied the prospect to update maps occasionally. These updates are sometimes rolled out once a year. When you dwell in a quickly developing space, this may be worth the expense, which usually runs anyplace from $40 to $100. Along with being obtainable from the producer, some brands’ updates could also be purchased at a discount by various online retailers.

Map updates for the main producers can be discovered by clicking on the relevant hyperlink: Garmin, Magellan, or TomTom. In a transfer sure to please Navigon house owners, the company has announced that homeowners of most of their items will probably be eligible for a free map upgrade this spring.

Download More Points Of Curiosity

Your GPS most likely got here with anyplace from 750,000 to 6 million points of curiosity (POIs), but these will be woefully out of date or just lacking in locations you have an interest in. GPS owners usually do not understand that they will add custom POIs to most major brands of GPS (Garmin and TomTom seem to be the perfect supported in this regard).

You may download POI information, normally without spending a dime, that embody all the things from red-light cameras to your favourite chain stores and restaurants. Go to POInUSA.com or POI Buddy to examine them out. You will discover extra sources on GPS Tracklog’s POI resource web page.

Create Your Personal POIs

Why not go a step additional and create your personal POI files? It is really not that tough to do. GPSInformation.org includes recommendations on creating POIs for Garmin units. Or you can use POI Editor to create POIs for Garmin or TomTom receivers. More references, how-to’s, and format converters will be found on the POI resource page.

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Send Custom Maps From Your PC

It’s often simpler to plan a visit at your computer than it is utilizing the small touch screen on your GPS. Just lately, Google Maps and MapQuest each added “Send to GPS” options.

From Google Maps, do a search after which click on on the “Ship” link with the e-mail icon subsequent to it. You may be given a alternative of which search outcome you want to ship, together with the choice to send it to a Garmin or TomTom GPS.

In MapQuest, search for and choose a location and click “Map.” Then click the drop-down “Send” field for a “Ship to GPS” option. The MapQuest transfer course of solely works with Garmin units.

Use Your Car’s Speakers

Why hearken to instructions (and MP3s and cellphone calls) over the tinny little speaker in your GPS? Many high-end GPS receivers have a built-in FM transmitter to ship audio to your car stereo’s speakers. This could work nicely in rural areas the place the FM spectrum isn’t that crowded, however finding an open frequency will show difficult in city places.

One alternative is to use the headphone / audio-out jack, found on even mid-range GPS models. Merely connect a patch cord to the auxiliary input on your automobile stereo for static-free sonic bliss.

Hit The Panic Button

If your GPS begins appearing a bit of buggy, and you’ve already tried installing the most recent firmware (see tip three), you may want to try a hard reset. Save your favorites to your PC first utilizing Garmin MapSource, TomTom HOME, or an identical utility out of your GPS producer. To learn how to do a tough reset on your machine, strive doing a Google advanced search for the phrase “laborious reset” and your GPS mannequin identify and quantity.


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