Mobile phone companies and fans of the latest high-tech devices have been consistently saying for years that dashboard-mounted GPS (Global Positioning System) navigation systems and displays are outdated and will soon disappear. They argue that there is no reason to buy one, because smartphones with Apple Maps or Google Maps prevail in all respects.

We noticed that there is still a demand for dash-mounted units, so we decided to investigate further. Since we sell a variety of car navigation systems, we take a look at the features and benefits of all of these units to determine if dash-mounted systems offer real advantages over portable smartphones. Since factory-installed GPS systems by automakers can cost up to $ 3,000 and require expensive upgrades, we haven’t included them in the scope of this article.

Conventional dash-mounted navigation systems have their advantages

Conventional dash-mounted navigation systems have their advantages

After a long search, we were surprised to find that we appreciate the fact that dash-mounted navigation systems never lose the battery, as in the case of smartphones when a power cord is forgotten or mis-positioned. Some of us are, too. We have become accustomed to the fact that GPS smartphone systems regularly break down in areas where signals are weak, making intermittent operating effort normal. Rather than relying on the signal strength of the cell tower, we estimate how satellite connections on Garmin, TomTom, Magellan and dash systems work well in these areas and still provide uninterrupted information flow for those who travel regularly long distances, these factors can avoid many problems when using dash-mounted systems.

One of us reluctantly admitted that he appreciated how a dash-mounted system temporarily freed up the phone for other functions over a long weekend. Accessing the music playlists was easier, it was possible to access the contact lists and consult notes in the calendar. After his girlfriend’s phone died and he had to borrow it for a long and urgent phone call, there was no need to give up his source of advice. During the same trip, they could also use their phone’s camera to take spontaneous photos that otherwise would not have been taken.

Others have commented that Google Maps does not display actual speed, miles, or remaining time as dashboard mounted units can, and that Apple Maps announces a departure very soon, then a second, and finally provide very short-range memory. .

Some of the dash-mounted systems are compatible with the rear view camera so that what’s behind you can be displayed on the screen. In addition, many offer a choice of viewing angle visibility options on their screen. For example, you can display your position on the road from above directly in traditional map style, or display a 3D image of the oncoming road. In both cases, the wide and clear routes are represented by colored arrows that highlight their path, even in the most complicated exits. A useful example of this system is the Garmin PhotoReal view (available on some models), where panels, intersections, and pending exits are recreated using the actual video captured from selected areas of the terrain.

If your vehicle does not support Bluetooth, look for this feature on certain dashboard mounted systems. Bluetooth compatible navigation systems are paired with the phone for hands-free calls. Some also automatically reply to an incoming message with a pre-written note that you handle and reply to upon arrival.

The safety advantages of the panel systems are numerous

hand-held-devices

Almost everywhere you go, there are fines for using a “portable device” while driving. If a police officer sees that you are paying attention to what looks like a cell phone while driving a moving car, you will be arrested and fined. It makes no difference to say that you are using the help system on your smartphone instead of an SMS. Legislation may vary from region to region, but the police attribute the reason for these laws to the fact that portable devices significantly increase the three types of driver distraction that are most likely to cause accidents. The first is visual distraction when you take your eyes off the road. The second is manual distraction when you take your hands off the wheel. The third and most serious is cognitive distraction because the mind is withdrawn from the guide.

Given these three types of distractions, using a GPS application on a smartphone while driving can be more annoying than sending SMS. At best, anyone familiar with typing and designing an alphanumeric keyboard can successfully create a text message with one hand on the steering wheel, observing only at regular intervals. The search for information on a map, however, requires a long and complete look on the screen, which leads to visual distraction, since the eyes must focus entirely on the path and on a small screen. Drag a small smartphone screen to change the displayed area can be tricky with one hand, but zooming in or out requires more. A second pointer must be removed from the steering wheel to hold the device, or the phone must be placed anywhere. It’s a manual distraction.

Often it takes more attention and time to focus on the names and words that appear on the screen. Depending on the application and phone, zooming in on a map may not increase the size of the letters indicating street names, highway numbers and points of interest. The combination of visual distraction and cognitive distraction, which has trouble reading fine print on a small screen, makes efficient driving almost impossible. If you need reading glasses to read the fine print, taking it out of your pocket will distract you. A sense of responsibility requires a stop, a waste of time and can lead to further stress when reintegrating into traffic.

Other reasons to enjoy the traditional GPS navigation systems mounted on the dashboard.

The use of a GPS application on your mobile phone can significantly affect the use of your data plan and also lead to surpluses in family plans. Some mobile phone providers set prices for mobile phones with unlimited amounts of data. If you recently updated your phone, your data capacity per month may be lower than before. If you’re traveling by car while on the go, it’s hard to stick to Wi-Fi hotspots and, of course, cell phone companies will raise their bills at excessive costs. If you prefer, some Garmin and other GPS systems have a smartphone connection for iPhone and Android that uses your existing data plan to provide information such as the destination, real-time weather radar and even the location where you parked your car. car have to exchange.

Many on-board navigation systems today include maps of North America with free updates, real-time traffic reports and a variety of screen sizes from 3.5 to 7 inches. A larger screen allows the driver and front passenger to see things on the same screen on the dash without having to change phones. If the person on your right carelessly fulfills their duties to help the eyes on the path of signs and approaching things, there is no drama: a quick and easy look at the screen offers all the instructions you have need. The recognizable ground signs, buildings and traffic lights not only appear in the photos, but are mentioned in the vowel narrative to give the driver a better description.

We also appreciate the ability of certain navigation systems mounted on the dashboard to give audible and visual warnings of red lights and radars en route. When finding a parking space was a top priority, we were given parking spaces and hours. Finally, when we documented the miles, locations and other travel dates required for expense reports, these systems saved all the details for later access. Contractors will no doubt find it as useful for fleet vehicles as it is for parents.

In the GPS navigation section of our website you will find a full selection of on-board systems as well as portable GPS devices and GPS-based location products. All automotive systems are equipped with rechargeable batteries and cables that can be connected to the vehicle’s 12V socket. We also offer a range of GPS vehicle mounts and a wide range of accessories, including cases, chargers, USB cables and travel packs。