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GPS trackers and where to use them

GPS trackers are small, light, precise, and incredibly versatile in use.

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Thanks to worldwide GPS tracking, you can locate the whereabouts of people, animals, and objects alike – the system is used by companies to track packages or distances traveled within a month.

But is it even allowed to track everything and everyone? Is GPS tracking actually that useful – or primarily a technical gimmick?

Worldwide location thanks to GPS

GPS allows users to locate people or objects worldwide – the abbreviation stands for Global Positioning System which is part of the global navigation satellite system.

GPS trackers transmit the corresponding coordinates send by the satellites to a receiver, where they can be read and used by the owner of the device.

The trackers are usually not much larger than a matchbox and are equipped with a module for satellite communication and a mobile radio transmitter.

Theoretically GPS tracking covers the entire globe but in practical use certain factors can limit its range, for example subway stations or other areas underground.

Depending on the provider the desired data will be displayed on a smartphone or computer screen and the resulting costs can be paid per month or via transmitted location message.

Areas of application – who or what should be tracked with GPS?


It has an ambivalent connotation when it comes to tracking or locating people with GPS – it can be highly useful to provide security and send or get help in case of emergency. But its use can become intrusive just as fast and end up in sheer surveillance.

When it comes to private tracking, there is a general rule: Consent is mandatory. Monitoring should only take place with the explicit consent of the person concerned.

Furthermore, should no device contain an inbuilt microphone to avoid any kind of eavesdropping.

However, there are two exceptions:

  • Children: One of the benefits of using GPS tracking for smaller children is obviously that parents always know the whereabouts of their little one. In addition, GPS devices for this purpose are equipped with an SOS button. With this the child can call for help on its own – for example when getting lost in a mall. Just make sure to not replace a good parental bond with control.
  • Adults who need to be looked after: The most significant advantage of GPS tracking for people comes for adults with neurocognitive disabilities – for example people with dementia. Especially during winter, it is lifesaving when caregivers find out the whereabouts of a missing loved one or patient as fast as possible.


Pet trackers are ideal to keep an eye on your four-legged friend! Cats love to roam in the neighborhood and sometimes disappear for a few days, anxious dogs can turn into the fastest animals on earth when getting scared. For pet owners it´s always reassuring to know where they can find their furry friends again. Special GPS trackers for pets are robust, waterproof and build to not interfere with your pet´s daily activities.


The widest range of application for GPS devices is definitely tracking objects. Attaching a tracker to bikes, cars, laptops or cameras protects them from getting lost for good or even theft.

It´s important to place the GPS tracker as Inconspicuous as possible on the object, for example the glovebox of your car. Magnetic tracking devices are also available and provide a non-invasive application.

With the geo-fence-function it is possible to set a radius alarm – as soon as the object leaves the specified area, you´ll be informed via your smartphone.


Nowadays parcel tracking is standard for most postal services and it also works via GPS tracking. Major international companies such as FedEx allow you to click on notices such as “Track here your FedEx delivery time“. By that, you´ll be informed about where your goods are and when they´ll arrive at your door. The so-called Tracking & Tracing system enables both sender and recipient to take a look at the transport chains at any time as well as tracing the clearance and the path of the package.

Useful in many areas of life

GPS trackers are small, light, precise, and incredibly versatile in use. The right device for the desired application and help to minimize worries about the whereabouts of your child, dog or car.

Have any thoughts on this? Let us know down below in the comments or carry the discussion over to our Twitter or Facebook.

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Chris has been blogging since the early days of the internet. He primarily focuses on topics related to tech, business, marketing, and pretty much anything else that revolves around tech. When he's not writing, you can find him noodling around on a guitar or cooking up a mean storm for friends and family.

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