Buying a Pocket PC GPS Navigation Software

Think you need to buy a GPS Navigation Software for your Pocket PC? Read on for guidance on how to go about selecting a software which will suit your specific needs.
There are a variety of Pocket PC software available for your Pocket PCs, PDAs, and Palm OS handsets. Which software you install on these usually depends on the use you are going to put the handheld device through. One of these is GPS software.

GPS (Global Positioning System) is an effective tool to have on your Pocket PC, especially while driving to unknown locations, to get directions along with relevant maps of the area. Here is an account of this fantastic software in the form of simple FAQs.

How Does a Pocket PC GPS Software Work?

A GPS receiver is an electronic instrument which tells you where you are on a map display. These devices are essentially available as add-ons for Pocket PC PDAs and for Palm OS devices. The entire system comprises the GPS receiver and the software.

These navigational systems rely on information passed on by the GPS Satellite Network developed by the US Department of Defense during the Cold War. The receiver gets signals from these satellites, which are processed by the GPS software to guide you from a particular location to a particular location. The software, thus, also includes maps, which are a major need to translate the information from the receiver to useful information. Maps are usually obtained from various map data providers.

Apart from giving you step-by-step directions to reach a particular location, the software also guides you with information regarding the estimated time of arrival, and will guide you when you want a detour during traffic jams and other hurdles. Some software even use audio to guide you when you need to make a turn, etc.

How to Decide If You Need It?

So now comes the important part―how do you decide if you need to purchase the software? Here are a few things to consider which should help you decide.
  • Think about the number of times in a year you actually travel to unfamiliar places, such as new cities and towns. Ideally, someone who does travel in this fashion at least 5 times in a year, needs to have GPS software.
  • Do you tend to get lost often when you drive around? If so, you really need software with an audio guidance system, which will prompt you when you need to make a turn, etc.
  • Do you often need to find a particular location if you are walking around to reach your destination? If so, GPS can and will guide you to your destination properly.
  • Do you tend to travel often and carry a notebook computer with you? In this case, you may have to look into purchasing a GPS accessory which simply connects to your notebook computer via a USB port.
  • Do you tend to rent cars when you travel? If so, you can have the GPS software installed on your Pocket PC help you find different locations because of the portability benefit offered by handheld devices.
So, Which GPS Software is Right for Me?

It all depends on your personal preferences, of course. But if you have gone through the list above, you should have a general idea of whether you need GPS software in the first place, and if so, what features you want in the software.
  • Ideally, the first thing to consider is the amount of disk space the software will occupy. This includes the disk space which will be occupied by the maps that will be needed for the software.
  • As mentioned above, if you are the kind of person who gets confused while doing other things while driving and loses track of direction, then a software which provides audio guidance for turns, etc., will be suitable for you.
  • Different software have different types of on-screen displays of the maps. Familiarize yourself with the displays of these software before you buy them. Choose one whose display you find easy to use and maneuver on your handheld device while driving. Some of these software have a 'Try-Before-You-Buy' option which should suit your need in this case.
  • Ideally, the software should be easy to use and follow; most of its commands should be easy to understand and use. It does not make sense that you have to go through the user manual before you can figure out what is to be done. If you can use the software intuitively and can figure out and remember most of the commands easily, then the software is the one you want.
So, what are you waiting for? Go ahead and pack your bags, load the car, pick up your GPS software, and take your road trip.