Tuesday, May 5, 2009

How to Use a GPS Receiver

The advent of the Global Positioning System (GPS) has made traveling easier and map reading more obsolete. A GPS receiver allows you to access GPS satellite signals and acts as a step-by-step guide to take you to your destination. A GPS can direct you to a physical address, longitude/latitude coordinate, or programmed locations like grocery stores, gas stations and restaurants.


  1. Step 1

    Make sure that the GPS receiver is plugged into your vehicle's cigarette lighter. Some GPS models are chargeable allowing for cordless use as well.

  2. Step 2

    Turn the unit on. Many systems require you to agree to terms and conditions regarding GPS use while driving. Your GPS receiver will then showcase either a menu page or "Where to?"

  3. Step 3

    Choose among the GPS choices for destination. These may include address, shopping, entertainment, coordinates, etc. If you select address, you will be prompted to enter a street number and name, city and state. The GPS will then find your address. If your address is mistyped or not found on the current edition of the GPS, the system will provide a list of addresses close to your choice.

  4. Step 4

    Select the activity you're planning, if you don't have a physical address to enter. For example, if you want to find an Italian restaurant, choose "Food." Many GPS programs will provide subheadings for various types of food. It may read "Chinese, Italian, American, Indian," etc. Choose "Italian." The GPS will select a list of Italian restaurants in the area and sort them from closest to farthest in distance from your location. This principle is used for a variety of services including banks, theaters, shopping, etc. Some GPS receivers break these down into further subcategories.

  5. Step 5

    Make your choice of route. You can choose between the shortest travel distance or time.

  6. Step 6

    Follow the step-by-step directions of your GPS receiver during your trip. Your receiver will give audio or visual directions. Many receivers will tell you to make a turn in distance increments (one mile, 1/2 mile, 500 feet). When your GPS has guided you to your destination the system will say or read "Arriving at Destination."

  7. Step 7

    Check for extra options on your GPS receiver. Some units feature music and photo capabilities, calculators, traffic information and weather updates.

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