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Prime 10 GPS Suggestions And Tips – Get probably the most out of your TomTom, Garmin, Magellan, or different GPS system by studying how one can speed satellite tv for pc lock, ship maps out of your PC, create POIs, and extra from our GPS skilled.

With world positioning system (GPS) devices extra fashionable and affordable than ever, here are among the greatest ways to get extra from your personal navigator. What follows are 10 tips and tips, together with some bonus pointers for owners of the two most popular brands, Garmin and TomTom.

Speed Up Satellite Lock

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

To download this info efficiently, go away your GPS powered on and beneath an open sky, immobile, for 20 minutes. Ideally, you’ll do this the primary time you turn the unit on, however it may be done any time after as nicely. It’s an especially good first step to take when you discover satellite acquisition taking longer than regular.

Another time you may pace satellite tv for pc lock is when you hop in a rental car following a cross-country flight. Many GPS units have a “new location” option on the satellite display menu. Use this when you’ve travelled more than 100 miles or so to present your unit an concept of what a part of the world you’re in, dashing up satellite tv for pc lock in the process.

On some items the new location function will come up routinely if satellite tv for pc acquisition is taking too lengthy. For a greater understanding of the know-how behind GPS, try Garmin’s GPS Information For Newbies.

Deter GPS Theft

GPS units are among the hottest devices round, and I do mean hottest in every sense of the word. Smash and seize thieves can steal your GPS in much less time than even the quickest unit can lock onto satellites, so to maintain your GPS off eBay, and your car’s windows intact, here are a couple of easy precautions:

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Take your unit with you whenever you leave your automotive.

Remove the suction cup mount from the windshield and wipe away any telltale marks (a microfiber cloth works nice for this). Higher yet, ditch the suction mount altogether and purchase a friction mount. These weighted mounts grip almost any form dash and are simple to hide underneath the seat or in the glove compartment. They do not fall off the windshield or leave suction cup marks behind.

That is my favorite kind of GPS mount. I can simply grab your complete mount/GPS assembly and place it on the passenger seat before I pull right into a parking lot, guaranteeing that nobody sees me disconnecting and hiding my GPS.

Replace Firmware

Firmware is software program that is embedded in your GPS. The frequency of firmware releases for a specific mannequin varies in accordance with the producer; some present ongoing support higher than others. Firmware updates can repair system glitches and make your GPS function extra easily. And some firmware updates truly add new options and capabilities.

Updates are fairly painless. They sometimes involve connecting your GPS to a pc (most receivers include a mini-USB cable) and operating the firmware replace file. Garmin has simplified the process with its WebUpdater utility, which will test for brand new updates, or you’ll be able to go to the Website for an inventory of the present firmware model in your model. You’ll find updates for Magellan devices on its assist page, whereas TomTom updates are now dealt with by way of the TomTom HOME utility.

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There may be at all times the likelihood that a major bug will make its method into a new firmware launch. One technique to resolve this is to roll your unit back by installing an older model of firmware. Luckily, GPSInformation.org has an archive page of older firmware, for this very purpose.

Get Particular With Your Instructions

Many mid-range GPS receivers offer text-to-speech, allowing them to name out the road names of upcoming turns. This characteristic allows you to hear “flip left on Oak Street” reasonably than simply “flip left in 200 toes.” Yet text-to-speech solely works if you choose the right voice in the unit’s setup menu; it would not all the time default to the correct setting. So be sure you are getting the whole lot you paid for. Look for voice choices that say “TTS” or “computer.”

Replace Your Maps

For those who buy one of the prime manufacturers of GPS, you will be provided the prospect to replace maps occasionally. These updates are sometimes rolled out once a year. Should you stay in a rapidly growing space, this can be definitely worth the expense, which normally runs anywhere from $40 to $100. Along with being accessible from the manufacturer, some brands’ updates may be purchased at a reduction by way of various online retailers.

Map updates for the leading producers will be discovered by clicking on the relevant hyperlink: Garmin, Magellan, or TomTom. In a move positive to please Navigon house owners, the corporate has introduced that homeowners of most of their units can be eligible for a free map improve this spring.

Download More Points Of Interest

Your GPS probably got here with anywhere from 750,000 to six million points of curiosity (POIs), however these can be woefully out of date or simply lacking in locations you have an interest in. GPS owners often do not understand that they can add customized POIs to most major brands of GPS (Garmin and TomTom appear to be one of the best supported on this regard).

You’ll be able to obtain POI recordsdata, normally for free, that embrace all the things from red-light cameras to your favorite chain stores and restaurants. Go to POInUSA.com or POI Friend to verify them out. You could find extra sources on GPS Tracklog’s POI resource web page.

Create Your Personal POIs

Why not go a step further and create your personal POI recordsdata? It’s actually not that arduous to do. GPSInformation.org contains tips about creating POIs for Garmin devices. Or you can use POI Editor to create POIs for Garmin or TomTom receivers. More references, how-to’s, and format converters can be found on the POI useful resource page.

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Ship Custom Maps From Your PC

It’s often easier to plan a visit at your laptop than it is using the small contact display in your GPS. Just lately, Google Maps and MapQuest each added “Send to GPS” options.

From Google Maps, do a search after which click on the “Send” link with the e-mail icon next to it. You may be given a selection of which search outcome you wish to ship, along with the choice to ship it to a Garmin or TomTom GPS.

In MapQuest, search for and select a location and click “Map.” Then click the drop-down “Ship” field for a “Ship to GPS” choice. The MapQuest transfer course of only works with Garmin gadgets.

Use Your Automobile’s Audio system

Why listen to instructions (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 automobile stereo’s audio system. This may work well in rural areas the place the FM spectrum is not that crowded, however finding an open frequency will show challenging in city places.

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

Hit The Panic Button

In case your GPS starts appearing somewhat buggy, and you have already tried putting in the most recent firmware (see tip 3), you would possibly want to attempt a tough reset. Save your favorites to your PC first using Garmin MapSource, TomTom HOME, or an identical application from your GPS producer. To learn how to do a hard reset in your device, try doing a Google advanced seek for the phrase “exhausting reset” and your GPS mannequin title and quantity.

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