While some gadgets could be described as frivolous, the sat nav is a good example of a credible innovation for the better, successfully improving road safety, driver efficiency, and the overall driving experience. These nifty devices have been proven to actually help keep drivers more focused, and roads safer as a result.
Even if you don’t often drive across countries, the traffic alerts and speed camera features equate to fuel and journey time savings that make it most worthwhile. But now you’ve decided you want one, what are the latest options for the driver in the market for global positioning?
The current global leader in sat navs, Tom Tom, provide reliable devices for personal or business use, and are available for a range of budgets, offering a basic Start model for around $100, and ranging through models up to the Go 6000, which boasts, among other features, 3D mapping and hyper-accurate display. Its main competitors, Gamin and Navman, offer similar devices, although one standout system from Gamin, the HUD, projects directions onto the windscreen, meaning you don’t have to take your eyes off the road ahead for a second.
We all know about Google Maps, but you may not have activated its relatively recent navigation function, which can be operated from any android or iOS device with geolocation enabled. While it’s not recommended to be squinting at your phone screen while driving, it does have the option of audio instruction, and the undeniable allure of being absolutely free.
One downside is Google’s need for a mobile data connection to operate. For a more precise and reliable experience, with no such hindrance, a downloadable app like the Tom Tom navigation app might be a worthwhile $50 purchase for the mobile owner on a budget.
While some might argue that the sat nav can only be a momentary blip on the technology radar, soon to give way to smartphone software, it’s clear that the safety argument for a dedicated system is too strong for this to be the case.
It’s all too easy to forget to deactivate a phone from ringing, or to become distracted from your route by a stray notification. For now, it looks as though the sat nav is here to stay, and even cheap dedicated systems are the best all round choice.