Smart Phone GPS Vs Motorcycle GPS

A decade ago smartphone did not exist. Three decades ago, no one was familiar with the computer use and its advantages. Intuitively, Technology is progressing faster than ever and the older technology gets substituted with the newly developed technology. There was a time when you required a map to get around. 

Do you remember the time when the smartphone was new and it included the feature called GPS that you used to reach your destination step by step? You were not afraid of getting lost and you could reach the destination as the service provided the entire way with all possible directions to reach your destination. It also takes all the requirements like shortest path, low-cost and telling you in middle all nearby locations such as restaurants, library, bus stop, etc. Thanks to the Smartphone which let us know all about GPS and its functioning.

Technology contributed to the advancement of the dedicated motorcycle GPS unit. Now riders can easily use the designated motorcycle GPS unit to navigate around. You can also use the Smartphone and secure its place in motorcycle, using it for the same purpose of navigation. In some instances, a smartphone cannot hold up where a motorcycle GPS unit can. Everything comes with its pros and cons, we outline the pros and cons of motorcycle GPS unit and smartphone. GPS devices are designed depending on the application like Car GPS devices, truck GPS devices, handheld GPS devices & latest Smartphones. This way they ensure that the unit could do the tasks required efficiently.

The dedicated motorcycle GPS unit is built to last longer and its durability can withstand the vibration from the engine, different weather condition, humidity level, shock level, and different temperature ranges. The good quality product and the right material are required to handle the different environment. The conditions on motorcycle vary a lot and dedicated GPS unit is able to hold up in tough outdoor condition. Quality built GPS navigation units come with a high price tag. The smartphone is the alternative to the high cost of a motorcycle GPS unit. Many smartphones have the built-in GPS maps to give you the direction between two different points and also the apps specifically designed for smartphone GPS play a vital role in improving GPS accuracy. Using the smartphone and available apps is significantly cheaper than a dedicated motorcycle GPS unit.

Maps & Navigation

Specialized motorcycle GPS navigation units offer you preloaded maps which help you go through even without an internet signal. You can always install the latest map updates by connecting it to your PC whereas smartphone connects to the internet through the cellular network that gives you the choice to update while on the go. In case, you lose your cellular signal, you lose your navigation as well. On the other hand, motorcycle GPS navigation units have the SD card slot that gives you another option of downloading the map. Motorcycle GPS navigation units also give you an option to edit the route if you have accidentally found a shortcut. You can trace it back if you need it in future. These units have the subscription plans that enable you to download and should traverse new routes lacking in a preloaded list. It would be fair to say that Smartphone apps are also coming with an option to download new maps.


 Manufactures claim dedicated motorcycle GPS units claim these units to be more accurate and versatile. In fact, it makes a perfect sense as it is called a dedicated device of a particular job. But in reality, it is not so. Test reports do not come in favor of motorcycle GPS units. It is hard to spot the difference as the smartphone GPS alternatives perform well in some test reports. It is hard to make any claim based on the accuracy tests.

Real-time traffic information

The best way to avoid delay on the road is possible only when you are able to access the real-time traffic information. Indeed, it is very important to access the real-time traffic information as this service saves your fuel, time, and your nerves. You never know what is ahead on the road, where the traffic is, and how long will it take to get through it. You also get to know about an accident, congestion, or maintenance work to plan the deviation accordingly. Both perform the task in a similar way. There is only an exception as the smartphone depends on the cellular network and the connection can break in a less populated area. The dedicated motorcycle unit receives the information all along the road.


You will find the major gap in durability as the dedicated units are built to withstand the toughest weather condition, dust, and heat. Many of them come with the touchscreen and you can operate with your gloves also. On the other hand, you will not find the smartphone sturdily built as the motorcycle GPS unit. You have to invest in protective cases and handlebar mounts. Smartphones are also prone to motorcycle vibration and could face the problem sooner.

Overall a smartphone device has advantages only if you are connected to the internet and most useful in urban areas. However, a motorcycle GPS unit could help you to navigate even in the remotest part of the United States because it had preloaded maps. So in a long-term perspective, one should always prefer a dedicated motorcycle GPS unit over smartphone navigation.

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