GPS has revolutionized our daily lives. GPS or Global Positioning System provides satellite tracking services that are useful in a variety of commercial and personal applications.
Thanks to the advent of technology, the importance of GPS in our daily lives is increasing rapidly.
The introduction of GPS vehicle tracking system is an example. It has found huge commercial applications for taxi companies and cab services among others.
Most companies now realize the importance of GPS technology for achieving greater efficiency. And, thus provide better benefits to people.
When business professionals understand how GPS can intensify their business or services, they are able to take their business to the next level of competency.
GPS technology is a handy and reliable tool for explorers as well
Even though it is a useful addition to many industries, it has certain drawbacks. Hence it is essential for you to understand the benefits and their drawbacks clearly.
Pros of GPS Tracking System:
Some of the advantages (or, we can say uses of GPS in everyday life) include the following:
- Helps to Find Location
GPS technology provides you the simplest way of getting to any location you want. You can also easily establish your current co-ordinates and share to your contacts.
It is easier than finding location via maps. The same can be done for vehicles using GPS vehicle tracking systems, which can be handy if a GPS enabled vehicle is stolen.
- Makes Navigation Easier
With the help of GPS devices, navigation is made easier. It provides relevant details such as distance and shortest route to a preset location.
Based on GPS maps, you can see and travel, according to the terrain features.
- Perform Various Functions
Carrying barometric altimeters, electronic compass, watches and calendars is a hassle.
In most GPS devices, these functions are provided in addition to the GPS navigation facility for making your journey remarkable and enjoyable.
- Tracking Vehicles and Employees
Equipping your company vehicles with GPS vehicle tracking system is an excellent way of keeping track of vehicles and the employees traveling in them.
This not only encourages safety of employees, but also enables responsible handling of company property.
- Other Features
As GPS is having so many varieties of map data and routes, you are able to gain access to a lot of information instantly without much delay. Some GPS devices include digital cameras and weather radios.
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Cons of GPS Tracking System:
Some of the disadvantages of the system include the following:
- System Issues
You cannot completely depend on GPS navigation devices as they rely on satellites. Hence it is not suitable for use in outdoor areas with interference.
At the most needed times, communication can face interference, especially while approaching dense vegetation, caves and deep ravine.
As in the case of every electronic devices, running out of charge is an issue with GPS units.
The only thing that can be considered during such situation is to keep a stock of spare batteries or power banks with you.
- Result in Employee Dismay
If you suddenly inform your employees that they are going to be tracked, obviously they are not going to like it.
They will have a feeling that you don’t trust them and feel it as a seizure of their privacy. This can be prevented from telling them that it is only a part of quality assurance.
Uses and Applications of GPS technology
There are so many uses and applications of GPS technology. In today’s fast paced life, an innovative technology like GPS is finding plenty of applications.
People always seek for convenience, to make their life easier.
Some of the uses are mentioned below:
1. Painting or Artwork Security
Artwork is valuable as well as unique and hence it is always the prime target of thieves.
You can easily find out the stolen item and recover with the help of GPS technology.
2. Prevention of Car Theft
The location of a car can be known once you install a tracking device in your vehicle.
The vehicle not only be recovered easily, but also serve as a deterrent to thieves. This can even prevent the attempt to rob cars.
3. Taking Care of the Elderly
The elderly people will find GPS a boon, since they are able to place emergency calls whenever necessary along with location.
Whenever they fall feel dizzy or uneasy, they can use GPS incorporated emergency services to get immediate help from their dear ones.
4. Police and Private Detectives
During investigations, police and private detectives can attach GPS devices to vehicles, allowing them to easily track the movement of criminals and thus come up with solid evidence.
This can prevent a lot of crimes in the society and thus ensure your safety.
Hikers often proceed to unknown areas and hence there are high chances for getting lost. Using a GPS device, a missing hiker can be tracked and recovered quickly.
6. Protect Women
These are harsh times for women. They can run into danger anytime, anywhere.
In such cases, GPS enabled devices can act as lifesavers Women can protect themselves with the system by finding the safe route or they can alert someone who can help her.
7. Camping lovers
Like hikers, camping enthusiasts get rescued at the right time if they get lost.
They can also track the details of places where they already have been and where they want to go and thus enabling them to find new spots for camping.
8. Company Vehicle Fleet Tracking
Using tracking devices, you can manage fleet routing and improve your fleet running efficiency. It saves time and fuel, saving you money.
A tracking device can be fixed under a pet’s skin. Searching a pet become easier for you, if they somehow gets lost.
10. Disabled People
Like elderly people, disabled people can also be tracked. In case of an emergency, a disabled person can make calls or send alerts quickly. This helps provide them extra safety.
Here’s a nice Slideshare presentation on 10 everyday applications of GPS Technology:
Some of the applications of GPS Tracking System are:
GPS tracking systems have a wide range of application in our daily life. Its contribution to each of the fields is priceless.
Some of the major applications of GPS are:
1. Road Transport
GPS devices are quite useful for the road transport sector.
Some of the uses of GPS technology in road transport include commercial fleet management, taxi services, monitoring of public transport services and passenger details, dispatch and navigation etc.
Most aircrafts now use GPS technology for en route navigation. This technology is widely used for navigating pilot-less aerial vehicles without crew.
The applications followed in such cases are resource mapping and aerial surveying.
3. Shipping and Rail Transport
Major applications of GPS in shipping industry include ocean and inshore navigation, dredging, harbor entrance and docking, hydrography, cargo handling, etc.
Applications of railway transport include rolling stock management, cargo tracking signaling, level crossing approach and train integrity etc.
Widespread applications of GPS in the field of Science include meteorology and climate research, environmental and atmospheric monitoring, botanical specimen location etc.
It is also used in the agriculture and fisheries for the purpose of harvesting, yield monitoring, autonomous vehicle control, land area monitoring etc.
The security applications include tracking of valuable cargoes, containers, vehicles, secret tracking of suspects etc. Companies are thus able to monitor their journey and assure security.
6. Heavy Vehicle Guidance
GPS technology is used to guide and track heavy vehicles in applications such as mining and construction.
It can be very much helpful for heavy vehicle drivers in fulfilling their duty quickly.
7. Surveying, Mapping and Geophysics
With the help of GPS technology, it is easy to position bridges, survey markers, buildings and large infrastructure.
Also, it is used in mapping sector, including aerial mapping and Geographical Information System.
In Geophysics, GPS technology is used to time stamp seismic activity and monitoring position changes in sensitive physical formations such as earthquakes and volcanoes.
In the telecommunication field, GPS technology is particularly useful for mobile telephone networks. GPS satellites can provide synchronized clocks.
9. Financial Services
GPS satellites which provide atomic clocks are used by various financial institutions for the purpose of Electronic Fund Transfer.
As timing accuracy is essential for financial trading networks around the world, the atomic clocks on GPS satellites are very much useful.
10. Social Activities
The most notable application in social activities includes geotagging photographs, skydiving, cross country cycling, GPS-based social networking, other gaming activities etc.
GPS Tracking System Used in Various Countries
The generic name for the GPS system is Global Navigation Satellite System. There are two types of GPS system- Global navigation satellite system and Regional satellite navigation system.
The owner of Global positioning System (GPS) is the United States. GLONASS is Russia’s version of GPS. These two are global.
China is developing its BeiDou Navigation Satellite System while Galileo, which is in the initial deployment phase is owned by the European Union.
India has a regional GPS Aided GEO Augmented Navigation (GAGAN), satellite-based augmentation system and recently launched Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS). All these are regional ones.
Why GPS is Important?
GPS includes space-base satellites, computers and receivers which provide your location information in every weather conditions anywhere at any time in the world.
It was originally made for the US military to locate their troops in deserted areas and forests.
GPS technology is also used by the general public for finding road directions.
They get warning regarding traffic situations and thus can make use of alternative routes if needed.
These devices are installed inside the car which guide drivers to a certain destination.
Stolen items can be recovered easily with the help of GPS technology.
Another essential use of GPS is to keep track of people and valuable belongings.
You will be safer when you install a tracking device to your hand phone, as family members would be able to know your whereabouts when needed.
As technology continues to progress, GPS will continue to have new and more valuable applications in our everyday life.
How GPS Affects Business, Education and Society
Many businesses and government agencies use wireless communications to track their vehicle location.
Some of the GPS receivers have been integrated into cell phones, mobile radios and mobile data terminals in order to meet the needs of fleet managers.
Most of the pilots are turning to GPS as a navigation aid for their aircraft.
Similarly, there are so many applications in the field of engineering, surveying market, etc. Hence, GPS has greatly affected our business lives.
GPS made a tremendous impact in our society. Our environment became easier and safer place to live with this technology.
Parents can track the whereabouts of their children whenever they need, police can find the location of dangerous criminals easily and also old aged people can seek help immediately with least difficulty.
These are some of the valuable things GPS have offered to our society and our everyday lives.
Though GPS application is not fully implemented by the education sector, it is very much useful and valuable.
They are making attempts to integrate GPS and mapping technology for fulfilling of math, science and social studies curriculum.
Students are able to develop high order thinking skills using the technology.
These skills of students are essential for their future employment in business, government and industry.
This can completely change the perspective of student’s learning and thus help them to be more successful.
From all these facts, it is clear that GPS is one of the brilliant technology introduced by humans. As in case of transportation, it has been a boon to drivers as well as explorers. Companies are able to track their employees and thus achieve better productivity. Similarly, it helps various fields and thus make the daily lives better.