Which GPS Should I Get?
Mary is a gadget person. Her birthday is coming up, and I know she would really enjoy a GPS for her bike. But which one should I get?
Based on my limited knowledge of GPS, I have compiled some selection criteria. Here they are:
1. History – high importance. We would like to come back from a ride, upload data from a GPS, and see the route and statistics.
2. Storage capacity – high importance. We don’t take a laptop when we tour. How much data can a GPS store? Are there GPS units that have removable memory cards? Could we track 30 days’ worth of data?
3. Directions – nice to have. This could take some of the fun out of the ride – it would be like asking for directions. 🙂 However, I do recognize it could be a useful (if infrequently used) feature.
4. Map display – not important. Not to me anyway. However, etc …
5. Usability – high importance. The basic functions a normal person would use while riding should be intuitive. Devices that require navigation to 3 levels of indenture based combinations of multiple keys held down for long or short periods are useless in my books. (Nod in the direction of Steve Jobs.)
6. In-Ride statistics – nice to have. I would expect statistics such as speed and altitude to be standard. Gradient would be highly desirable. Ideally, a GPS could eliminate the need for other bike computers. Capturing non-geospatial data such as cadence and heart rate would be very attractive.
7. Compass – nice to have. If we were traversing the Sahara with no landmarks this could be useful.
8. Waypoints – not important. We have never needed to retrace our tracks after getting lost (cough, cough). On the other hand, if we were in the Sahara ...