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Understanding the Types of GPS and How They Work

written by: Sheri Newton•edited by: Rhonda Callow•updated: 2/4/2011

When you want to know how a GPS tracking unit works you can refer to this article to obtain more information. Find out the basics that you need to know on Data Loggers, Data Pushers, and Data Pullers.

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    How Does GPS Tracking Work?

    A GPS tracking unit enables you to determine the precise location of person, vehicle or other object. GPS (Global Positioning System) is the only functional system, which can record the position of an object at regular intervals. A GPS tracking unit is so helpful that it can store the recorded location data within the tracking unit. A GPS tracking unit comprises more than two dozen global positioning satellites that orbit the earth. Every satellite transmits signals that can be intercepted by GPS receivers to find the precise location of any object you are searching for.

    Garmin Nuvi GPS When using a GPS, you will sometimes find that a GPS tracking unit can be difficult to receive signals due to some circumstances. Factors like narrow streets and high buildings make a GPS tracking unit rather troublesome. You need to have the access to the GPS and a GPS receiver to operate a GPS tracking. GPS satellites transmit signals that are received by the GPS receiver. If the GPS receiver intercepts these transmissions, it will calculate the direction, speed and location of an object.

    Types of GPS Tracking Units

    GPS tracking units consist of three categories and below are those units along with the brief explanation.

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    Data Loggers

    Data loggers are usually utilized for hobby and sports, such as the GPS devices for hunting. This is one of the really interesting types of GPS and how they work is fantastic for when you are outside! If you’re a biker or a hiker, they are very worthwhile for you. A GPS logger merely uses its internal memory to log the position of the gadget at regular intervals. It has a USB port, a memory card slot and internal flash memory. There are also some GPS loggers functioning as a USB flash drive. Therefore, they allow you to download the track log for analyzing data in your computer. An example of the usage of a data logger is in a private investigation where data logger can be used to keep track of the fleet vehicle or the vehicle. If you use this data logger, you won’t have to follow your target so closely and you’ll have a backup source of data.

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    Data Pushers

    We can use data pushers for security purposes. A data pusher transmits data from the device to a central database at exact direction, distance, speed, location and regular intervals. This is one of the really interesting types of GPS and how they work is really quite amazing to help with investigating. The typical data pushers are often used in some companies that employ a mobile workforce such as taxi companies. Once a taxi company puts a GPS tracker in each taxi, it will enable the staff to know if a taxi is doing its route, or is on time or late. The device can be applied for armored trucks so that the company will recognize the position of the trucks in case of robbery. If you have an expensive car you can install a GPS tracker to anticipate theft. You can also activate it by using SMS to function as a fleet control device. Private investigators use this device to track a suspected person to know his or her activity.

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    Data Pullers

    Contrasted with data pushers, which transmit their position at regular intervals, data pullers stay on at all times. An example of GPS unit using data puller is a computer that is connected to the Internet and GPS. You can consider using this device in the location where someone may possibly steal your valuable property. Nowadays, data pullers come into a sophisticated form containing a GPS receiver and a cell phone. When an SMS message is sent to the GPS tracking unit, it will reply with the current location of the unit.

    Image courtesy of Garmin.