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Radar Detectors, Satellite Navigation and GPS (Global Positioning System) Speed Camera Detector buying advice.

Maplin
- Satellite navigation, GPS and accessoriesat discount prices. Ranges featured include TomTom, Garmin Nuvi, Navigon, Magellan and Roadstar.

Radar and Speed Camera Detectors - what do they do?

Radar and speed camera detectors inform you when you are approaching a speed camera location (which is often an accident blackspot). So it can be regarded as an essential piece of safety gear aswell as a way of keeping points off your licence.

Car Audio Plus
- Satellite navigation systems by Alpine, Garmin, Kenwood, Navman, Sony, TomTom and other manufacturers, at discount prices.

GPS (Global Positioning Satellite) camera detectors

The latest speed camera detectors use GPS, which enables them to produce more accurate and comprehensive warnings, such as information about speed camera locations up to two miles in advance.

Are speed camera and radar detectors legal in the UK?

It is currently legal to use a GPS speed camera detector in the UK and Europe. Although most products only provide UK coverage, some products now include speed camera location throughout Europe - check the specification of the product you are intending to buy if this is an important feature for you.

Comet
- Web exclusive deals and free delivery on Tom Tom (ONE, 300, 500, 700 and Rider), Talex, Garmin, Navman, Acer, Drivesmart and more.

Gadget Cover
- Insurance for your SatNav from £2.40 per month, insurance for other gadgets (eg laptops and PDAs is also available.
AutoTec
- Gadgets for your vehicle including Satellite Navigation, GPS Detectors and Laser Diffusers.

Independent research has found that camera detector users have 24% fewer accidents (MORI). However, camera jammers (which stop police speed cameras from detecting the speed of your car) may be illegal. Police have attempted to prosecute offenders under the offence of "Perverting the Course of Justice", although to my knowledge all cases so pursued have been dropped by the CPS before they got to court. If you know different, please let me know, and I can update this article.

The technologies used in speed camera detection are:

  • Radar Detection
    These work by detecting the radar actively coming from the camera ahead (currently legal in the UK).
  • Laser Jammers
    These work by jamming the signal from the camera (probably illegal - so far untested in court).
  • GPS
    Has a built in database of camera locations. (It is adviseable to regularly update the database on your system to avoid it becoming out of date - I would recommend a weekly update) (legal).

Radar detectors are currently legal in the UK but illegal in many other European countries. There has been discussion in parliament over changing the law to make them illegal. However, nothing has yet come of it. This is not to say that they won't become illegal in the future.

GPS detectors are legal because they use a UK database of camera locations. This data is data that is available in the public domain. Public knowledge of this data helps to deter excessive speed in camera (and accident blackspot) locations.

Active GPS
- Specialists in GPS, satellite navigation and speed camera detection.