Navigation systems in cars are divided into permanently installed on-board computers and mobile devices. The difference lies in the scope of the integrated software, and thus of course ultimately in the price.
But even the less expensive mobile devices can basically do everything that helps drivers find their way in traffic via GPS. the basic principle is always the same: the vehicle’s current position data is retrieved via GPS receiver, the software calculates any desired information based on the integrated digital map material, and gives it visually on the display and acoustically via voice output.
However, even with these basic functions, significant differences in quality and ease of use are possible. For example, the images on the display range from simple four-color graphics to realistic 3-D animations.
Simple operation is mandatory
Just as it’s illegal to talk on the phone while driving, the same is true for a sat nav. The navigation systems can therefore be controlled like a radio while driving, d.H. Volume and information type can be set at the touch of a button or by touch. more is not necessary, because the manual use of the navi is done before the start of the journey.
In the case of the on-board computer, this is limited to switching it on and entering the destination. The navi does everything else on its own: it receives four supplementary satellite signals that determine its position in space, and suggests the best routes to the driver. Once the selection has been made, the journey can begin. The navi constantly determines the position of the vehicle while driving and guides the driver along the route.
Before a mobile device is ready, however, a few preliminary steps are necessary. The device must be connected to the vehicle’s battery and securely fastened in the driver’s field of vision. Usually this is done with suction cups on the windshield, but brackets on the console or on the dashboard are also possible. It is important that the supply cable does not restrict the freedom of movement in the cockpit.
Navigation systems increase safety
The focus of a navigation system is driving safety. But the devices can also function as anti-theft devices – if a transmitter is added to the GPS receiver. Then the position of the vehicle can also be determined from other locations or. The navi triggers an alarm if the vehicle is moved without authorization or leaves a defined area.
How to use a navigation system
Many details play a role in driving safety. Basically, the driver is informed about the current position, the driving direction, the current speed, the next turn, the estimated remaining driving time incl. the time of the next turn via diplay. informs the driver of the time of arrival and the remaining distance to the destination.
For this purpose, current traffic jam messages can be transferred to the route via bluetooth or TMC radio reception, and the route can be changed operationally. Knowledge of speed limits and the positions of speed measuring stations prevent drivers from making mistakes. Bluetooth also functions as a hands-free system for the cell phone. For a good sound of the announcements many navis use the inserted car radio and/or. Its loudspeakers.
The FM frequency on which the navigation system transmits is set for this purpose. Accordingly, an MP3 player integrated in the navigation system can also provide good entertainment during the journey. Even if the radio is running, an acoustic gap is always created for the orientation announcement. voice input via bluetooth eliminates the need for manual handling of the navi.
Navigation systems help optimize
Navis not only limit the safety risk when driving, but can also achieve ecological and economic effects. With the manufacturer tomtom, for example, it is possible to include the individual driving characteristics of a car owner in the calculations of the navigation system.
In this way, the information on driving time is not only calculated from the general route data, but also from the "speed setting" of the driver. This is known to fluctuate significantly around the respective applicable tempolimit. The navi also "remembers" a driver’s favorite routes and prefers to display them as suggestions. Fuel-saving routes can also be calculated.
The "lane assistant" helps drivers to get into the correct lane in good time before making a turn. The rear view camera helps when parking or approaching charging stations. The image of the vehicle’s rear bumper is transmitted to the navi display and shows the driver exactly how much distance is still available.
On the long drive back from vacation, the display can also be used for other purposes. At least the passengers can take a look at the snapshots from the digital camera or smartphone from their vacation.
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