State of the Art


May 15, 2006
Outside Magazine

Quick and reliable satellite acquisition is now the norm, and with the introduction of more sensitive receivers and faster processors in coming years, expect to get reception even in heavily treed or steep terrain—like canyons or deep mountain valleys.

Though already ubiquitous, onscreen mapping is advancing rapidly as memory capacity grows. Not only do you get more detail; with vast built-in databases, you also get tips on everything from nearby microbreweries to the best viewpoint on a hiking trail.

In late 2005, the European Commission launched the first satellite in Europe's forthcoming Galileo navigation system. Because it's nonmilitary (and hence not subject to strategic concerns), the system promises to be more accurate and better able to penetrate forest cover worldwide.

Sharing navigational data—wirelessly—will be standard in future devices and is already available on GPS phones with software from Trimble Outdoors (

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