Not many of us really know what GPS is. In fact, 17% of mobile users have never turned their GPS on. The funny thing about the Global Positioning System is that it has so many day to day practical uses and we don’t even know it exists in the palm of our hands. Here are 7 things you can do with your mobile GPS:
7. Track your location
The most fundamental thing you can do with your GPS is track your location. This is the primary goal of the GPS. Just turn it on and watch the phone direct you to a map of your geometric location. It’s really handy, especially if you’re lost or travelling, finding your way around a new place or just don’t know the language of the area you’re in.
6. Track your lost phone
Something which is gaining more and more prominence in the mobile industry today, the GPS is being used today to track the location of missing/stolen phones. For example, the iPhone uses GPS to seal down the phone and switch it off. At the same time, it can also locate the phone, even if the battery is out. This feature is now being explored for phone safety measures by other manufacturers.
5. Warning systems
Getting on a long bus/train ride and just feel like dozing off? No problem. Some apps have calibrated the GPS such that you can enter the starting and ending point, and the GPS tracks your proximity to the destination and buzzes the phone fifteen minutes prior to your location. Currently, iNap uses this technology for the iPhone.
4. Call a Cab
A service which has become really popular in India is OLA Cabs. All you have to do is install the app, request for a cab and let the app automatically find your location using the phone’s GPS. All nearby drivers are then made aware of your location and any one of them responds to pick you up. This comes in very handy in case of emergencies or unforeseen circumstances, like when people share a cab from office.
3. Easy Searches
Another extremely popular feature provided on phones today is the Map. There are various versions of maps; iMap, Google Maps, Nokia Maps, etc. They all employ tagging and location data accuracy to carve out various routes. Another feature in these maps is being able to search for restaurants, petrol pumps, shops, etc just by launching the Map. Reviews and ratings have also been integrated, in case users prefer Maps to sites like Zomato.
2. Phone Learning
Some applications like ‘Locale’ use the GPS to understand your location. By doing so, it automatically programs the phone to adjust to your surroundings. For example, if you set a particular location as your office and you want your phone to shift to silent mode as soon as you enter that area, the phone will detect your location and turn ‘silent mode’ on. Similar features are provided for other locations as well, developed to making our lives more comfortable.
1. Avoiding Cops
I probably shouldn’t mention this feature but there is an app which allows you to monitor traffic cameras, signals and cop locations. ‘Trapster’ is an app which uses the tagged GPS of riders/drivers who’ve spotted a camera/cop in a particular locality and tagged it. All the users then get an update that that locality has danger looming over it. If you’ve accidentally left home without your helmet or license, this seems like the perfect application to get you around safely.