A brilliant revolutionary innovation which gives out any vehicle location (when installed in it) using GPS (Global Positioning Satellite). It is used for a varied number of purposes which will be discussed in this article, like determining the
location of public transport
and monitoring their efficiency, fleet management, security, and surveillance, especially in personal vehicles in case of stealth/robbery of the same. This descriptive article will also throw light on the different types of Vehicle tracking systems: Active and Passive, and also on the important GPS based tracking constituents.

What is a vehicle tracking system?

This is a system which collects the automatic vehicle location through software with the help of GPS (Global Positioning System) and tracks the vehicle location.

#GPS tracking system

GPS is a satellite system based on the navigation satellites which uses the radio frequency. This was launched in 1973 for the first time by the US Department of defence and was in use by the US military. By 1995, it became available to everyone.

GPS tracking system uses this satellite system and software to visualize the exact location of any vehicle using the tracker.

Working of GPS

The satellites in this system consist of atomic clocks which are very stable. These stable atomic clocks and the ground clocks are adjusted to the same time. If any change occurs in the ground clocks, the atomic clocks are synchronized with that value: this is checked on a daily basis. The correct position of the satellite is precisely monitored. The information about the position and time of GPS satellites is continuously transmitted. At Least four of the satellites of the system should be facing the GPS receivers at all times. As the position and time of these satellites changed, the receiver monitors these.

Applications of GPS tracking system

Basically, GPS tracking system monitors the movement of the object in which the tracker is installed. This system proves to be a very useful tool in many day to day scenarios like:

  • It helps to determine the location of the vehicle, in case of any theft or robbery.
  • It helps in traffic management, which in turn gives us a clear picture of the time it would take to reach our destination.
  • It is also used in public transports in almost all big cities where it gives the passengers information about the present and next stop.
  • In case of any emergencies or misconduct by the driver of any cab companies, the owner can easily find the location of the cab and do the needful.
  • It has been used by the military for a lot of search operations.
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These were just some of the many varied applications GPS satellites have in our daily life.

How does the System function?

The GPS receivers get the signals provided by the satellite and compute exact location, velocity and time. With the help of just four receivers, a 3-D view can be given. The GPS involves a total of 27 satellites, out of which 24 are functional and three extra satellites are present as a standby in case of any functional error by the 24 satellites. These satellites are orbiting around the earth and signals sent by these are received and data is computed by the receivers.

How are these satellites tracked?

Control stations of GPS are present all across the globe. These control stations monitor the signals sent out by the continuously orbiting 24 satellites. Signals are transmitted from these satellites in the form of microwave carriers which are then computed by the receivers and the information like exact location, time and velocity is obtained.

#Principle of working for Vechile Tracking system

The satellites of GPS transmit electromagnetic signals to carriers. After this information regarding the position of space stations, the distance between these stations, time-based information and other such data is sent to the receiver. Now the receiver will do a mathematical calculation using the time taken by the signal to reach the receiver. This is how the information travels.

2 Trilateration principles are involved in the working principle which are:-

  • 2-D trilateration
  • 3-D trilateration

As mentioned above, the GPS receiver has to do certain mathematical calculations, so for these calculations, certain information is required.

At least 3 satellites should be present above the place to be traced to get the location of the place.

The distance between each of the satellite is involved regarding the concerned place.

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The waves which have the speed of light are then picked up from different satellites by multiple receivers at a given time.

#Different types of GPS Tracking

GPS, in a general sense, tracks any vehicles position throughout its movement. There are two different tracking systems which are:

  • Passive tracking system: GPS tracking system will store all the data collected within itself. The system stores this data (vehicle’s journey) in either the internal storage or it can even be stored in an internal memory card. This data can be sent or viewed later as and when required.
  • Active tracking system: This system is generally used for fleet tracking or traffic management. All the data collected in this case is automatically sent to centralized tracking stations.

#Features of Vehicle Tracking System

There are a variety of Vehicle tracking systems based on the Fleet’s size which is to be managed and a different one which can be used for personal vehicle tracking. ‘SAM GPS Security’ offers many of these features with the key features being: Engine Access, Safe zones & History.

Real-Time Tracking

Tracking systems monitors the real-time locations of the moving vehicle from one place to another. If the vehicle is in motion, then the speed of the vehicle along with its location is displayed on the map. Map markers are used to show the state of the vehicle whether it’s moving, parked or idle.

Trip History

In a graph, the information about all the trips is depicted: average speed, distance travelled, how many stops and idle time etc. Additional details like over speeding data and overdrive distances are also recorded in the system and can be replayed anytime. This feature is very useful for all cab owners to manage their business.


According to one’s need, many alerts can be configured into the system like idle time, Fiddling alert, Alert for overspeeding etc. All of these will help the user in the management of fuel usage and optimize the workforce. One can even use the geofencing alert wherein you can create boundaries on the map; anytime that boundary is crossed an alert is sent. This helps in monitoring the real-time movement of a vehicle.

Dashboard Summary and History Reports

Up to 90 days of data can be stored in a vehicle tracking system and if such a feature is installed, it proves to be useful for fleet managers. Graphical set of reports can also be displayed for an easy analysis.

Easy to Use

For real-time tracking of the vehicle, one doesn’t need a complicated set of multiple accounts. Bird’s eye view of the vehicle, as well as point to point tracking information, can be easily obtained thanks to the user-friendly interface of the tracking systems.

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All the required features can be easily installed and incorporated as per need. However, it is always better to opt for a compact system so that it can be easily placed discreetly. Compatibility of the system with the vehicle should also be considered prior to the installation.

#Benefits of Buying or Installing Vehicle Tracking System

There are many advantages or benefits of incorporating such a system in our day to day lives like:

Cost Effective

With the installation of some features, the information about fuel usage, time vehicle has remained idle, unnecessary stops throughout journey etc can be known. This, in turn, would help in monitoring and be controlling the unwanted behaviour displayed by the driver. This is very useful for the financial management of a business.

Insurance Discounts

Some companies offer attractive discounts to fleet owners who incorporate vehicle tracking system. This, in turn, would help in cost cutting.

Driver’s Safety

Through this system, any unwanted accidents can be avoided as the system tracks and alert the driver of upcoming traffic jams and road constructions.

More Satisfied Customers

Since all the information regarding the route travelled by the vehicle can be easily tracked and if any changes can be effectively made, the services of the business related to vehicles will automatically improve.

Management of Employees

The driver’s behaviour can be easily monitored through the information provided by this system making it an effective tool in managing them and thus improving the administration.

Theft Prevention

Whenever there is an unusual activity in your vehicle, an alert is generated which helps in a quick response by the owner to avoid any thefts. The vehicle’s location can also be tracked real-time and one can easily locate the vehicle which is stolen.


These systems can be installed for personal use as well wherein you can keep a track of your loved ones if they are driven by a driver employed by you. In case of an emergency, one would be able to react quickly and reach the location given out by the tracking system.

The advantages of employing such a system for a car, truck, fleet or any kind of vehicle are endless. There are many things to be kept in mind before actually selecting the correct tracker for your use. This article gives out all the detailed features of the tracking system and can be used as a reference before buying one personally.