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What are GPS Accessories?

By Stephanie Partridge
Updated May 17, 2024
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A global positioning system (GPS) device is often very useful as a stand-alone item when it comes to navigation and travel. However, adding GPS accessories can greatly enhance the system’s performance and functionality. There are a wide variety of global positioning system accessories available, from cables to cases to software.

A popular GPS accessory is the device mount. This allows the GPS to be placed on the dash or console in a stationary position. The driver can see the GPS, but does not have to hold it or set it in a place where it can fall or slide, becoming inaccessible. There are mounts that adhere to the dash as a permanent fixture, but there are also mounts that are not permanent, allowing the device to be used in multiple vehicles and in different areas of the vehicle.

Cables, adapters and rechargeable batteries are other popular GPS accessories, particular for portable GPS devices. Cases are another hot item. Each of these accessories allows the GPS to be removed from a vehicle and placed in another vehicle or even act as a handheld, portable device for a walker.

Software is often available to improve GPS navigation. They may contain maps or processing specifications for GPS receivers. Many GPS devices do not function at full capacity without some sort of software assistance. Tracking software is also available for some devices. This software allows the vehicle in which the GPS device is housed to be tracked from a remote location, often the user’s home computer. Many manufacturers offer instructional software which allows the user to get the most out of their GPS device.

The type of vehicle also determines the type of GPS accessories that are needed and that are available. For instance, motorcycles have many GPS accessories that are not available or even useful for boats, while boats have many GPS accessories that are not available or useful for cars. Before purchasing any GPS device or GPS accessory, it should be determined that the device as well as accessories is appropriate for the intended use and vehicle.

GPS accessories are available through the manufacturer of the device. However, some independent companies also manufacture GPS accessories for brand name devices, often at a lower cost. When purchasing GPS accessories, it is important to be certain that the accessory is compatible with the device. This can be determined by checking with the manufacturer.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
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