GPS Systems

Choosing a GPS That Works For You


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GPS systems are arguably the most common electronic device in today's cars but as common as they are, prices fluctuate considerably from option to option.

Use this guide to help you choose a GPS that best suits you.

Budget Systems

Budget GPS systems are typically systems which do the essential: provide basic driving directions along with various functions. These can offer handy features such as text-to-speech and lane guidance, although this widely fluctuates based on the models. Basic models can run anywhere from $100 to $300 on average.

You may be able to find models under $100, especially with older models. In this market there are always new models being introduced, which means older models are subject to heavily discounted prices. Similar to computers, GPS systems can be purchased at discounted prices due to the industry.

High-End Systems

High-end GPS systems offer many advanced features, including lane guidance, Bluetooth integration, traffic information, music players and more can be found on some higher-end GPS systems. These systems range from $300 to $800 on average. Most of the models in this range are newer models; in this industry, the newest systems come with the price of cutting-edge technology.

Other models can easily surpass the $800 price point. You can buy an in-dash model (which typically requires professional installation) at $1000 or more. These systems are permanent units which integrate GPS functionality with your car stereo. These systems typically have very advanced functions and are chosen often to boost the value of the car as well, as they are permanent.

The GPS systems market is flooded with choices in the past few years. This has become one of the more competitive industries in consumer electronics in regards to the choices and types of GPS systems. However, in order to buy a GPS system, you must be aware of these choices in order to make a reasonable choice.

Features

In order to make an informed purchase on a GPS system, you must familiarize yourself with typical features found on various GPS systems. With the Internet, this can be done from the comfort of your home. One of the easiest ways to do this is to visit a site where you may purchase a GPS system, such as Amazon. Look at current products from reliable manufacturers, such as Tom-Tom and Garmin.

Once you do this you can acquire a list of the vital features you need in a GPS system. Options such as Bluetooth compatibility, text-to-speech, traffic updates and integrated music player may or may not be needed. You need to seriously consider these options, which can make the difference between a reliable $150 GPS system to models exceeding $500.

Research

Perhaps the most important step when you purchase a GPS system from home is doing your research. Begin by going to a website which offers reviews on GPS systems or electronics in general, such as CNET. On sites such as these you are able to view reviews from experts in the field who have used devices which you are considering. These reviews will help you gauge the advantages and disadvantages of particular GPS systems and identify the best one for your needs.

One word of advice, stick to a major GPS brand if possible. It will be easier to find updated maps in the future, and the resale value will be higher than a no-name counterpart.

Another step in researching GPS systems is reading user reviews. On websites such as Amazon and Best Buy, you are able to read consumers experiences with systems you are considering. This is important, especially with software issues and concerns of reliability. Unfortunately, issues like these occur when purchasing new electronic products; thus, it is important to protect yourself in this regard.

Shopping

Once you have narrowed down your selection to your top choices, you will need to find the best price for your system. GPS systems, due to the crowded nature of the industry, will typically be able to be purchased for low prices. They are regularly sold at lower prices to make room for new models, and thus great deals can be found on the Internet for them. To search for the best deals, go to a price comparison website, such as PriceGrabber.com. At a site such as this you will be able to see prices for certain GPS models from major web-based companies.

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