The rise of mapping and GPS solutions is always something that I watch. There was a time when I had external GPS units. I still have two of them. They connect to the PC via the USB port. I don’t use them anymore, but I keep them attached to the filing cabinet in my office. There was a time when I only used Delorme software. I have to say their customer service before Garmin purchased them was horrible, so I stopped using their products. I loved their handheld GPS and their offline communication unit, but I won’t own their products ever again. They are on my customer service list with Noah’s Properties and Vonage as companies I will never do business with again.
I do still own two different mapping packages on my phone for driving, one for walking and one for boating. Each of them is useful for the environment being considered and that they are used in. Marine has to provide you with the channel (where it is safe to be( as well as any known water hazards. Driving and walking are the same, although with walking you do have time to respond to things if you are paying attention. the New GPS systems for cars include weather and traffic. The improvements in the products have been impressive. When I was first using a GPS, now nearly 20 years ago, the reality of the GPS was that it could be off by as much as 300 yards.
300 yards doesn’t seem that much, but it is when you are in a big city. Now the GPS is accurate to within 3 or fewer feet. The same is true for boating GPS fixes. It is also interesting because when you fly a drone, the reality of accuracy becomes critical. When you pick a GPS fix for the drone, you need to make sure you have three feet on either side so the drone has some wiggle room. I learned that the hard way two years ago, and ended up chewing up the propellors of my Drone. I ended up not seeing the rock on the far side of where I was landing, and ended up hitting the rock, the drone dipped and I had a damaged drone propeller (actually two). All that said, it is amazing how accurate GPS solutions re now!