If you didn’t already own a GPS device or use a GPS app on your phone, many of you probably received GPS devices for Christmas. By now you have likely run into situations where the location data isn’t quite correct. Maybe a business address is wrong or the location of your destination is off by several buildings. Rarely is this the fault of your GPS device itself. It is more likely that the map data is simply wrong. Most people have no idea where this data is coming from, yet alone how to get it corrected. Luckily, I have found the answers for you!
The first thing to do is to make sure you have updated your GPS device with the latest map data. Many GPS devices require you to do this manually. Additionally, to get map updates many GPS manufacturers require a subscription fee. However, many newer devices can automatically update (especially GPS apps) or notify you when it is time to update. As well, many higher-end devices come with free lifetime map updates. As an aside, if your GPS device is hard to update or you don’t want to keep paying a subscription, you may want to look into a new device. Back on topic, oftentimes updating your GPS device will correct location errors. But if you have updated your device and the error still exists, then you must report the problem to the companies that supply the map data.
A few newer GPS devices allow their users to make corrections directly on screen and upload them to the manufacturer. If you have one of those devices, then simply follow your instructions. But most GPS devices do not have this feature. Instead, you must manually do this on-line. Usually, companies that make GPS devices get their map data from one of two sources. NavTeq and Tele Atlas. So to make corrections to the map data, you must submit your corrections to those companies, regardless of what brand of GPS unit or app you have. Simply use the links below to submit your corrections. It can be hard to know which brand of GPS uses which map data company, so it is advised to simply submit your corrections to both companies.
If you are interested in more of the technical details of how to fix errors on GPS devices, this link has a lot more information: http://www.gps.gov/support/user/mapfix/
If you have any questions about GPS devices or related technology, please feel free to contact me.