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Several benefits offered by vehicle navigation devices rely in one way or another on GPS. Onstar, one of the leading providers of this service offer their customers several convenient options. GPS can be utilized to locate your vehicle and automatically lock or unlock it. On some models the system can be used to diagnose car problems such as a check engine light or strange noises. The program can even use GPS to locate your car and flash the lights or sound the horn if you forget where you parked. (Learn More: What is OnStar 2003)

GPS also has business applications. A larger company with many vehicles such as UPS or Fed Ex may use GPS to track their fleet. This allows instantaneous updates on the status of deliveries and the vehicles carrying them. This system (fleet tracking) consists of: a vehicle locating device, in which GPS or another system such as Loran is used to know the physical location of each vehicle, a vehicle mounted communications device to send the vehicles location and status to a control center, a communications network to relay data transmitted from the vehicle to the control center, and a computerized information center to allow the processing of the information received from each vehicle. (Intro to GPS Apps 2003)

Another interesting application of GPS in personal or commercial vehicles is the idea of an automated driving system. Several prototypes are being worked on. One, Navlab incorporated a video camera and a GPS system to drive from Pittsburgh to San Diego in 1995. It drove a total of 98.2 percent of the distance (some 2,849 miles on Interstate highways). This system could eliminate much of the traffic jams and congestion that plague our interstate and highway systems. (Tenenbaum 1997)

GPS and its Uses in Cellular Phones

Cellular phones have changed much over the last few years. Just ten years ago, cell phones were bulky, expensive, poorly supported

The Emerson NV-5000 is a versatile in-car navigation system featuring accurate and detailed street maps of the United States. Powered by the Windows CE operating system, the NV-5000 uses navigation software from Pharos, a company that also provides software for a host of other mobile GPS devices.

After downloading maps to the unit from your computer via a USB connection, you can use the NV-5000's intuitive controls to get door to door directions. Navigation is made easy with a full-color touch screen and continuous GPS tracking to update your current position. To make driving easier and safer, the NV-5000 provides turn-by-turn voice guidance and automatic zoom-in when approaching turns.

Not only does the NV-5000 allow you to store all of your favorite addresses for future use, you can also use its large database of POI's (Points of Interest) as destinations. The unit also has plenty of room for growth. Its 128 MB internal memory stores all your frequently used maps, plus there's an SD Card slot that lets you expand to 1 GB of storage using an optional SD Card. The unit comes ready to use out of the box, with all necessary accessories included. The bundled Pharos software requires a Microsoft Windows-compatible PC (see technical data for full system requirements).



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vehicle tracking system is an electronic device installed in a vehicle to enable the owner or a third party to track the vehicle's location. Most modern vehicle tracking systems use Global Positioning System (GPS) modules for accurate location of the vehicle. Many systems also combine a communications component such as cellular or satellite transmitters to communicate the vehicle’s location to a remote user. Vehicle information can be viewed on electronic maps via the Internet or specialized software.
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