In my last post I looked at several GPS features you don’t need. Today we’ll check out the flip-side, updating my post from several years ago. What are the best and most useful upgrades when choosing a navigator? I’ll start with ones available on relatively low end units and then move on to features found on more expensive models.
Have your GPS show what lanes you need to be in for an exit, or even on surface streets in some cities. Priceless!
And if Lane Assist is too subtle for you (or you space out easily), there’s nothing like having a picture of the exit pop up to say, hey, here’s your turn!
Do not buy a 3.5” GPS navigator; 4.3" is the minimum for most people and you may be happier with a 5” model. A bigger screen makes it easier to tap menus and enter text without error, and the map display isn’t as cluttered.
Speed limit display
Got a lead foot like mine? Most models will even show your current speed in red if you are exceeding the limit.
Lifetime map updates
It is cheaper to buy these bundled with the device than as an add on later. If you live in a never changing rural area, this probably isn’t that important to you. On the other hand, if you’re in a fast growing metro or an area plagued by highway construction, look for models with an M appended to the model number.
And if you can afford them…
I highly recommend the above features. The next ones may not be as critical, but are definitely worth paying extra for if you can swing it:
Distracted driving is a serious hazard to your health. The latest voice command models from Garmin and TomTom have generally performed very well. This is an especially important feature if you’re driving solo.
Previously on my do not buy list, many of the latest models have dramatically improved sound quality. Read my reviews for details before making your selection though, as quality and ease of setup does vary.
With these, you don’t need to fumble with the mini-USB plug each time you get in your car. Recent Garmin nuvis with this feature include the 169x, 23×0, 24×0, and 3xxx series.
Do you agree or disagree with the above list? What have I left out? Chime in below.