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High 10 GPS Ideas And Tips – Get probably the most out of your TomTom, Garmin, Magellan, or different GPS gadget by learning learn how to speed satellite tv for pc lock, ship maps out of your PC, create POIs, and extra from our GPS expert.

With international positioning system (GPS) units extra in style and affordable than ever, here are a few of the finest ways to get more out of your personal navigator. What follows are 10 suggestions and tips, together with some bonus pointers for homeowners of the 2 most popular manufacturers, Garmin and TomTom.

Pace Up Satellite Lock

While you flip on your GPS for the first time, it downloads almanac info from GPS satellites. No, this isn’t the Farmer’s Almanac, although it does need to do with the position of objects within the sky. In this case, your unit is receiving information about the place GPS satellites are situated out of your current location. Having this info on your unit will velocity satellite tv for pc lock, also known as time-to-first-fix (TTFF).

To download this information effectively, depart your GPS powered on and below an open sky, motionless, for 20 minutes. Ideally, you’ll do this the primary time you flip the unit on, however it may be accomplished any time after as properly. It’s an particularly good first step to take should you notice satellite acquisition taking longer than normal.

One other time you’ll be able to speed satellite lock is whenever you hop in a rental automobile following a cross-country flight. Many GPS items have a “new location” choice on the satellite tv for pc display menu. Use this if you’ve travelled more than a hundred miles or so to provide your unit an thought of what a part of the world you are in, dashing up satellite tv for pc lock in the process.

On some models the new location feature will come up automatically if satellite tv for pc acquisition is taking too lengthy. For a greater understanding of the know-how behind GPS, try Garmin’s GPS Guide For Freshmen.

Deter GPS Theft

GPS models are a number of the hottest gadgets round, and I do mean hottest in each sense of the phrase. Smash and grab thieves can steal your GPS in much less time than even the fastest unit can lock onto satellites, so to maintain your GPS off eBay, and your automobile’s home windows intact, listed below are a couple of simple precautions:

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Take your unit with you whenever you depart your automotive.

Take away the suction cup mount from the windshield and wipe away any telltale marks (a microfiber material works nice for this). Better yet, ditch the suction mount altogether and buy a friction mount. These weighted mounts grip practically any form sprint and are simple to cover below the seat or within the glove compartment. They do not fall off the windshield or go away suction cup marks behind.

This is my favourite sort of GPS mount. I can simply grab the entire mount/GPS assembly and place it on the passenger seat earlier than I pull into a car parking zone, ensuring that no one sees me disconnecting and hiding my GPS.

Update Firmware

Firmware is software that’s embedded in your GPS. The frequency of firmware releases for a specific mannequin varies in keeping with the manufacturer; some provide ongoing assist better than others. Firmware updates can repair system glitches and make your GPS operate extra easily. And a few firmware updates really add new options and capabilities.

Updates are fairly painless. They sometimes contain connecting your GPS to a computer (most receivers come with a mini-USB cable) and running the firmware update file. Garmin has simplified the process with its WebUpdater software, which will check for new updates, or you’ll be able to go to the Site for a list of the current firmware model to your model. Yow will discover updates for Magellan devices on its assist web page, while TomTom updates at the moment are dealt with by way of the TomTom HOME utility.

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There’s at all times the chance that a main bug will make its means into a brand new firmware launch. One strategy to resolve this is to roll your unit again by putting in an older version of firmware. Happily, GPSInformation.org has an archive web page of older firmware, for this very cause.

Get Specific With Your Directions

Many mid-range GPS receivers supply text-to-speech, permitting them to call out the road names of upcoming turns. This function permits you to hear “flip left on Oak Avenue” reasonably than just “flip left in 200 feet.” But text-to-speech solely works if you choose the right voice within the unit’s setup menu; it doesn’t at all times default to the right setting. So be sure you might be getting everything you paid for. Search for voice picks that say “TTS” or “computer.”

Replace Your Maps

Should you purchase one of many prime brands of GPS, you will be provided the prospect to update maps on occasion. These updates are usually rolled out annually. If you happen to reside in a rapidly growing space, this may be well worth the expense, which normally runs anywhere from $40 to $100. Along with being obtainable from the manufacturer, some brands’ updates may be purchased at a reduction by numerous online retailers.

Map updates for the main producers could be discovered by clicking on the relevant hyperlink: Garmin, Magellan, or TomTom. In a move sure to please Navigon house owners, the corporate has introduced that owners of most of their items might be eligible for a free map upgrade this spring.

Download Extra Points Of Interest

Your GPS probably came with anywhere from 750,000 to six million factors of curiosity (POIs), however these will be woefully out of date or simply missing in locations you are interested in. GPS house owners often do not understand that they can add custom POIs to most main manufacturers of GPS (Garmin and TomTom seem to be the very best supported in this regard).

You possibly can obtain POI recordsdata, usually without cost, that include every thing from red-light cameras to your favorite chain shops and eating places. Go to POInUSA.com or POI Friend to examine them out. You can find more sources on GPS Tracklog’s POI useful resource web page.

Create Your Own POIs

Why not go a step additional and create your individual POI recordsdata? It’s really not that tough to do. GPSInformation.org contains recommendations on creating POIs for Garmin devices. Or you should use POI Editor to create POIs for Garmin or TomTom receivers. Extra references, how-to’s, and format converters might be found on the POI useful resource page.

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Send Customized Maps From Your PC

It’s typically easier to plan a trip at your computer than it is using the small contact display screen on your GPS. Not too long ago, Google Maps and MapQuest both added “Send to GPS” features.

From Google Maps, do a search after which click on on the “Ship” hyperlink with the e-mail icon subsequent to it. You’ll be given a choice of which search result you want to send, along with the choice to send it to a Garmin or TomTom GPS.

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

Use Your Automotive’s Speakers

Why listen to directions (and MP3s and cell phone calls) over the tinny little speaker in your GPS? Many high-end GPS receivers have a built-in FM transmitter to send audio to your automotive stereo’s audio system. This will work effectively in rural areas the place the FM spectrum is not that crowded, however discovering an open frequency will show difficult in city places.

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

Hit The Panic Button

In case your GPS begins performing a bit buggy, and you have already tried putting in the newest firmware (see tip 3), you may wish to strive a tough reset. Save your favorites to your PC first using Garmin MapSource, TomTom HOME, or a similar utility out of your GPS manufacturer. To find out how to do a hard reset on your system, attempt doing a Google advanced search for the phrase “laborious reset” and your GPS mannequin identify and number.

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