Mar 3, 2024

Types of GPS Trackers for Cars: A Comprehensive Guide

Types of GPS Trackers for Cars: A Comprehensive Guide

GPS trackers for cars are becoming increasingly popular as a way to monitor the whereabouts of vehicles. These devices use global positioning system technology to track the location of a car in real-time. There are several types of GPS trackers available on the market, each with its own unique features and benefits.

Various GPS trackers for cars: plug-in, hardwired, and portable models displayed on a table with car keys and a map

One type of GPS tracker is the plug-and-play tracker, which is easy to install and use. These trackers plug directly into the car's OBD-II port, which is typically located under the dashboard. They can provide information about the car's location, speed, and other data in real-time, and can be accessed using a mobile app or web-based platform.

Another type of GPS tracker is the hardwired tracker, which is installed directly into the car's electrical system. These trackers are more difficult to install, but offer more advanced features such as geofencing, which allows users to set up virtual boundaries around a specific area and receive alerts when the car enters or exits the area. Hardwired trackers can also provide information about the car's battery voltage and other diagnostic data.

Understanding GPS Trackers for Cars

A car with various GPS trackers installed, including plug-in, hardwired, and OBD trackers, displayed on a table with their respective features highlighted

GPS trackers for cars have become increasingly popular in recent years, offering a range of benefits to vehicle owners. With a GPS tracker installed in a car, owners can track their vehicle's location in real-time, monitor its speed and direction, and receive alerts if the car is moved without authorization.

Fundamentals of GPS Tracking

GPS tracking is based on the Global Positioning System (GPS), a network of satellites orbiting the earth that transmit location data. GPS trackers receive this data and use it to determine the location of the tracker itself, as well as the location of any other devices connected to it, such as a car.

One of the key benefits of GPS tracking is its accuracy. GPS trackers can pinpoint a vehicle's location to within a few meters, making it easy to track a car's movements in real-time. Additionally, GPS tracking devices can provide regular updates on the car's location, allowing owners to monitor their vehicle's movements over time.

Types of GPS Trackers

There are several types of GPS trackers available for cars, each with its own set of features and benefits. Some GPS trackers are designed to be hardwired into a car's electrical system, while others are portable and can be easily moved from one vehicle to another.

Real-time tracking is a key feature of many GPS trackers, allowing owners to monitor their vehicle's movements in real-time. Some GPS trackers also offer geofencing, which allows owners to set up virtual boundaries around their vehicle and receive alerts if the car moves outside of these boundaries.

Key Features to Consider

When choosing a GPS tracker for their car, owners should consider several key features. Accuracy and reliability are important, as is the ability to receive regular updates on the car's location and movements. Additionally, owners should consider the type of tracking they need, whether it be real-time tracking or geofencing.

Other features to consider include the size and portability of the GPS tracker, as well as any additional features such as battery life, tamper alerts, and remote access. By considering these factors, car owners can choose a GPS tracker that meets their specific needs and provides peace of mind knowing their vehicle is secure.

Popular GPS Tracker Brands

Various GPS tracker brands displayed on a shelf, including small, sleek devices for cars

When it comes to GPS trackers for cars, there are a variety of brands available on the market. Some of the most popular brands include Spytec, Bouncie, LandAirSea, and Vyncs. Each brand offers unique features and benefits that cater to different needs and preferences.

Spytec Series

Spytec is a well-known brand in the GPS tracking industry. They offer a range of GPS trackers, including the Spytec GL300 and the Tracki. The Spytec GL300 is a compact and discreet GPS tracker that can be easily attached to a car. It offers real-time tracking and geofencing capabilities. The Tracki is another popular Spytec GPS tracker that offers similar features.

Bouncie Devices

Bouncie is another popular brand that offers GPS trackers for cars. Their flagship product is the Bouncie GPS, which is a small and discrete device that can be easily installed in a car. It offers real-time location tracking, trip history, and vehicle health monitoring. Bouncie also offers a mobile app that allows users to track their car's location and receive alerts.

LandAirSea Systems

LandAirSea is a well-known brand in the GPS tracking industry. Their LandAirSea 54 GPS tracker is a popular choice among car owners. It offers real-time location tracking, geofencing, and historical playback. The LandAirSea 54 GPS tracker is also waterproof and can be easily attached to a car.

Vyncs Trackers

Vyncs is another popular brand that offers GPS trackers for cars. Their Vyncs GPS tracker offers real-time location tracking, trip history, and geofencing capabilities. It also offers vehicle health monitoring and alerts for issues such as low battery or maintenance reminders. Vyncs also offers a mobile app that allows users to track their car's location and receive alerts.

In conclusion, there are a variety of GPS tracker brands available on the market, each offering unique features and benefits. The above-mentioned brands are some of the most popular and trusted in the industry. It is important to do thorough research and choose a GPS tracker that best fits your needs and preferences.

Installation and Setup

Various GPS trackers and wiring tools laid out on a workbench, with a car nearby for installation

GPS trackers for cars come in different types and models, and each has its unique installation and setup process. In this section, we will discuss the three most common types of GPS trackers and their respective installation and setup processes.

Plug-and-Play Trackers

Plug-and-play GPS trackers are easy to install and use. These trackers come with a connector that plugs into the OBD-II port of the car, which is usually located under the dashboard. Once plugged in, the tracker starts working immediately, and the user can access the tracking data through an app or website.

To install a plug-and-play GPS tracker, follow these simple steps:

  1. Locate the OBD-II port under the dashboard.
  2. Plug in the GPS tracker's connector into the OBD-II port.
  3. Download the GPS tracker's app or access the website.
  4. Follow the setup instructions provided by the manufacturer.

Hardwired Tracking Options

Hardwired GPS trackers are more permanent than plug-and-play trackers and require professional installation. These trackers are hardwired into the car's electrical system and can be hidden from view. Hardwired GPS trackers are ideal for fleet management and high-value asset tracking.

To install a hardwired GPS tracker, follow these steps:

  1. Locate a suitable location for the GPS tracker.
  2. Connect the tracker to the car's electrical system.
  3. Conceal the tracker from view.
  4. Download the GPS tracker's app or access the website.
  5. Follow the setup instructions provided by the manufacturer.

Portable GPS Tracker Setup

Portable GPS trackers are battery-powered and can be easily moved from one vehicle to another. These trackers are ideal for personal use and can be attached to a magnetic mount for easy installation.

To set up a portable GPS tracker, follow these steps:

  1. Attach the GPS tracker to a magnetic mount.
  2. Place the tracker on a metal surface on the car.
  3. Turn on the GPS tracker and connect it to the app or website.
  4. Follow the setup instructions provided by the manufacturer.

In conclusion, GPS trackers for cars have different installation and setup processes depending on the type and model. It is essential to follow the manufacturer's instructions to ensure proper installation and use of the GPS tracker.

Subscription Services and Fees

Various GPS tracker models displayed with subscription service options and fee details

When it comes to GPS trackers for cars, subscription services and fees are an important consideration. Depending on the type of GPS tracker, users may be required to pay a monthly subscription fee in order to access certain features or services.

Monthly Subscription Models

Many GPS trackers for cars operate on a monthly subscription model. This means that users must pay a recurring fee in order to access the full range of features and services offered by the device.

Monthly subscription fees can vary widely depending on the GPS tracker and the level of service offered. Some devices offer basic tracking and location services for as little as $10 per month, while others may charge upwards of $50 or more for more advanced features like real-time tracking and geofencing.

It is important to carefully consider the features and services offered by a GPS tracker before committing to a monthly subscription model. Users should also be aware of any cancellation fees or penalties that may be incurred if they decide to cancel their subscription.

No-Subscription GPS Solutions

For users who prefer not to pay a monthly subscription fee, there are also GPS trackers for cars that offer no-subscription solutions. These devices typically offer basic tracking and location services without the need for a recurring fee.

No-subscription GPS trackers for cars can be a good option for users who only need basic tracking and location services. However, it is important to note that these devices may not offer the same level of functionality and features as those that operate on a monthly subscription model.

Overall, when considering GPS trackers for cars, it is important to carefully evaluate the subscription services and fees associated with each device. By doing so, users can ensure that they are getting the features and services they need at a price that fits their budget.

Advanced Tracking Features

A sleek GPS tracker is attached to the underside of a car, with advanced tracking features displayed on a dashboard screen

GPS trackers for cars come with a variety of advanced tracking features that provide real-time updates and notifications, geofencing capabilities, vehicle health and maintenance alerts, and additional safety features. Here are some of the most useful features that you can find in advanced GPS trackers:

Real-Time Updates and Notifications

Real-time updates and notifications are essential features that allow car owners to monitor their vehicles' location and status in real-time. This feature helps to keep track of the vehicle's movements and notifies the owner of any unusual activity or movements. Real-time updates and notifications also help to prevent theft and provide peace of mind to the car owner.

Geofencing Capabilities

Geofencing is a feature that allows car owners to set up virtual boundaries around a specific location. This feature is useful for monitoring the vehicle's movements and sending alerts when the vehicle enters or exits a specific area. Geofencing is also useful for parents who want to monitor their teenage driver's movements and ensure that they stay within a specific area.

Vehicle Health and Maintenance Alerts

GPS trackers with vehicle health and maintenance alerts provide car owners with information about their vehicle's performance and maintenance needs. This feature helps to prevent breakdowns and prolong the vehicle's lifespan. Vehicle health and maintenance alerts can also help car owners save money on repairs and maintenance costs.

Additional Safety Features

GPS trackers with additional safety features such as an SOS button and emergency notifications provide car owners with peace of mind in case of emergencies. The SOS button allows the driver to send an emergency signal to the GPS tracker, which then sends an alert to the car owner and emergency services. Emergency notifications also send alerts to the car owner and emergency services in case of emergencies.

In conclusion, advanced GPS trackers for cars come with a variety of features that provide real-time updates and notifications, geofencing capabilities, vehicle health and maintenance alerts, and additional safety features. These features help car owners monitor their vehicles' location and status, prevent theft, prolong the vehicle's lifespan, and provide peace of mind in case of emergencies.

Connectivity and Network Considerations

A variety of GPS trackers for cars are displayed, each with different connectivity and network considerations

When it comes to GPS trackers for cars, connectivity and network considerations play a crucial role in determining the device's effectiveness. Here are some factors to consider:

4G LTE and Network Coverage

One of the primary considerations when choosing a GPS tracker for a car is the network coverage. A GPS tracker that uses 4G LTE networks can provide faster and more reliable data transfer, making it an ideal choice for real-time tracking. It is important to check the coverage of the network in the area where the vehicle will be used to ensure that the GPS tracker will work effectively.

SIM Card and Data Plans

GPS trackers for cars require a SIM card to connect to the network and transmit data. It is important to choose a GPS tracker that is compatible with the SIM card of the chosen network provider. Data plans for GPS trackers vary depending on the provider and the amount of data needed. It is essential to choose a data plan that provides enough data for the intended use and is within the budget.

In summary, when choosing a GPS tracker for a car, connectivity and network considerations are essential to ensure that the device operates effectively. Checking the network coverage and choosing a compatible SIM card and data plan are critical factors to consider when selecting a GPS tracker.

Durability and Design

A GPS tracker is mounted on a car's dashboard, showcasing its sleek design and sturdy construction. The device is shown in use, with signals transmitting and receiving data

When it comes to GPS trackers for cars, durability and design are important factors to consider. A good GPS tracker should be able to withstand harsh weather conditions and should be designed in a way that is both functional and discreet.

Weatherproof and Waterproof Options

One of the most important features to consider when looking for a GPS tracker for your car is its ability to withstand different weather conditions. A weatherproof or waterproof GPS tracker is ideal for those who live in areas with extreme weather conditions or those who frequently travel to such areas.

A weatherproof GPS tracker is designed to withstand rain, dust, and other harsh weather conditions. On the other hand, a waterproof GPS tracker can be submerged in water without being damaged. It is important to note that not all GPS trackers are created equal, and some may only be water-resistant, which means they can withstand some moisture but not complete submersion.

Compact and Discreet Trackers

Another important factor to consider when choosing a GPS tracker for your car is its design. A compact and discreet GPS tracker is ideal for those who want to keep their tracking device hidden from view. Compact GPS trackers are small in size and can be easily concealed in a car's dashboard or other hidden areas.

Discreet GPS trackers are designed to look like other car parts, such as a cigarette lighter or a USB charger. This makes them difficult to spot and less likely to be tampered with. However, it is important to note that a discreet GPS tracker may not be as durable as other types of GPS trackers.

In conclusion, when choosing a GPS tracker for your car, it is important to consider its durability and design. A weatherproof or waterproof GPS tracker is ideal for those who live in areas with extreme weather conditions, while a compact and discreet GPS tracker is ideal for those who want to keep their tracking device hidden from view.

Monitoring and Alerts

GPS trackers for cars emit signals and display alerts on a control panel. Sensors monitor location, speed, and other vehicle data

When it comes to GPS trackers for cars, monitoring and alerts are essential features that ensure the safety and security of your vehicle. Here are some of the monitoring and alert features that you should look out for:

Tracking History and Trip Insights

GPS trackers allow you to track your vehicle's location in real-time and also provide you with a history of your vehicle's movements. This feature can be useful in case of theft or if you need to track the location of your vehicle for any reason. Additionally, some GPS trackers also provide trip insights such as the distance traveled, duration of the trip, and the average speed of the vehicle.

Speed and Boundary Alerts

Speed and boundary alerts are important features that help you monitor your vehicle's speed and location. With speed alerts, you can set a maximum speed limit for your vehicle, and if it exceeds that limit, you will receive an alert via email or notification. Similarly, with boundary alerts, you can set a virtual boundary around a specific area, and if your vehicle leaves or enters that area, you will receive an alert.

Maintenance and Fault Code Notifications

Some GPS trackers also provide maintenance and fault code notifications. This means that if your vehicle's check engine light comes on, the GPS tracker will notify you via email or notification. Additionally, the GPS tracker can also provide you with fault codes that help you diagnose and fix any issues with your vehicle.

Overall, monitoring and alerts are essential features of GPS trackers for cars. They help you track your vehicle's location, monitor its speed, and provide you with maintenance and fault code notifications. With these features, you can ensure the safety and security of your vehicle, and also keep track of its movements and performance.

Pricing and Value

Various GPS trackers for cars displayed with price tags, showcasing different value types

When it comes to GPS trackers for cars, pricing can vary greatly depending on the features and quality of the device. In this section, we will explore two categories of GPS trackers for cars based on their pricing and value.

Cost-Effective Tracking Solutions

For those on a budget, there are several cost-effective GPS trackers available that offer basic tracking functionality. These devices typically range from $20 to $50 and may not come with advanced features such as real-time tracking or geofencing. However, they can still provide accurate location data and are a great option for those who simply need to track the whereabouts of their car.

One example of a cost-effective GPS tracker is the Amcrest GPS Tracker. Priced at around $25, it offers real-time tracking, historical data, and geofencing capabilities. It also comes with a lifetime warranty, making it a great value for the price.

Premium Trackers with Advanced Features

For those willing to spend a bit more, there are premium GPS trackers available that come with advanced features such as real-time tracking, geofencing, and even remote engine shutdown. These devices can range from $100 to $300 and are typically of higher quality and durability than their cheaper counterparts.

One example of a premium GPS tracker is the Spytec GL300MA. Priced at around $100, it offers real-time tracking, geofencing, and even alerts for speeding and other driving behaviors. It also has a long battery life and a range of up to 2.5 weeks. While it may be more expensive than some of the budget options, the advanced features and quality make it a great value for those who need more than just basic tracking.

In conclusion, when choosing a GPS tracker for your car, it's important to consider both the price and the value of the device. While cost-effective options may be sufficient for some, those who need more advanced features may want to invest in a premium tracker for added functionality and durability.