Things You Need to Know About Live GPS Tracking Devices Before Buying


Sometimes you need to track things such as vehicles or persons or boats etc. We’re not casting judgement here. You might be an actual spy, of course, and doing some dangerous James Bond-style surveillance… Or you might be trying to unravel the mystery of who has been stealing your bins or you might simply be making sure your child gets to and from school OK. Or maybe you want to be sure that your mate is really at work and not doing something inappropriate. Whatever you purpose is, we’re giving here some useful advice what it comes using and choosing live GPS tracking devices.

What you can and can’t track

As you might have guessed, there are some laws about who and what you can track. Unfortunately, it’s difficult to give you specifics on what you legally can and can’t track as the law changes from place to place. (We at are NOT giving here any legal advice, please consult your legal advisor what it comes to legal use of GPS tracking equipment at your location).

However, generally speaking, you will usually have to own what you are tracking if it’s something like a vehicle, or be a parent or guardian if it’s a person. For this reason it is normally perfectly fine for an employer to track company vehicles. So you should probably be wary of how you use that fancy new Toyota on the weekend. Let´s say it other way also, if you are putting hidden tracking device on the car you do not own, you might be violating law. So, it is important to be familiar with local laws covering use of tracking device before actually taking action.

GPS trackers can be costly

You probably already have some idea that a live GPS tracker doesn’t come cheap and you’d be right, in a way. The cost doesn’t necessarily come from buying the device itself though, as much as the fact that you have to pay a monthly fee to use one. This is because the tracker is actually receiving signals from a GPS satellite, which have to pass over a number of cellular networks to get to your tracker. You can avoid this cost, but only if you are using so called historical GPS tracking device and not a live one. Another cheaper option is to use GPS tracker that sends you location data by SMS only when you request it.

As long as you have an internet connection you can see the location anywhere in the world

One of the biggest advantages of using real time trackers is that you can track the object (car, person or even container ship!) from pretty much anywhere in the world, as long as you are connected to the internet. The interface itself is web-based, so you don’t have to worry about installing anything. Simply login with your username and password and get all the info you need instantly.

You have two choices when it comes to powering the device

When it comes to how the device is powered you have a couple of options. Option one is the battery powered GPS tracker, which, as you might imagine, is entirely portable. Therefore it is easy to install and can be used for anything particularly mobile. It could be put on pocket, backpack or car. The alternative is the hardwired tracker. This hooks up directly to your vehicle’s power supply, so battery life is not going to be an issue. You might use this kind of battery power for fleet vehicles where long-term use would make recharging the battery a bit of a pain.

You can easily set up alerts

Another handy characteristic of GPS trackers is the ability to set up alerts for when whatever it is you are tracking moves into a specific area. For instance, if your company’s delivery van finds itself five minutes from its destination you can setup an email or text notification to let you know so you can inform the customer to be on the lookout. Or you can set up GPS fence for example around your city, and if tracked car or person moves outside that electronically fenced area, you will get instant alert.

Mounting the tracker under a vehicle is generally best

So you’ve made your decision, you know which type of tracker you need and what exactly you are going to track, now all you need to know is where to put it. The best place, as any number of movies will tell you, is to place the tracker on the underside of a vehicle. Most trackers have a built-in magnet to help keep it attached, while others will use a magnetic case to do the same job.

What alternatives are available?

As mentioned above there is an alternative to the live GPS tracker and that’s the historical one. The historical tracker has the advantage of being a little cheaper and does pretty much the same job, with one obvious difference: they don’t give you live updates. You must retrieve the tracker itself and download the information to your computer, or get the location data by SMS. It’s a little more cumbersome, but it still has its uses as a more cost-effective alternative to the live GPS tracker devices.

Below are the popular GPS-tracker models, chek them aout and read our GPS-tracker reviews!


This article text “Things You Need to Know About Live GPS Tracking Devices Before Buying” is (C) Copyright All Rights Reserved. For more detailed buying advice, be sure to read our Spy Gadgets Buyers Guide.

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