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What are GPS Coordinates?

GPS coordinates are numbers that pinpoint a spot on Earth. They use latitude and longitude. Latitude tells you how far north or south you are. Longitude tells you how far east or west you are.

GPS stands for Global Positioning System. It was created by the U.S. military in the 1970s. Now, we use it every day in our phones and cars.

How GPS Coordinates Work

GPS uses satellites orbiting Earth. Your device talks to at least four satellites to find out where you are. It measures how long it takes for signals to travel between the satellites and your device.

The accuracy of GPS can vary. Things like tall buildings, trees, or bad weather can affect it. But most of the time, it's accurate within a few meters.

Uses of GPS Coordinates

  • Finding your way using maps on your phone
  • Tracking packages as they're delivered
  • Playing games like Pokémon Go
  • Helping scientists study animal migration
  • Determining local sunrise and sunset times (check out for accurate times based on your location)

How to Read GPS Coordinates

GPS coordinates are usually shown as two numbers. The first number is latitude, and the second is longitude. For example: 40.7128° N, 74.0060° W. This is New York City.

You can use these numbers in Google Maps or other map apps to find exact locations.

Interesting GPS Facts

  • There are about 30 GPS satellites orbiting Earth
  • These satellites circle Earth twice a day
  • Other countries have their own systems, like Russia's GLONASS and China's BeiDou

Privacy Tips

Be careful about sharing your location online. Turn off GPS on your phone when you're not using it. This helps protect your privacy and saves battery life.

Want to Learn More?

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