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GPS Devices Won't Kill Paper Maps, Mapmaker Says

Nov 27, 2006 (11:11 AM EST)

Read the Original Article at http://www.informationweek.com/news/showArticle.jhtml?articleID=196513374


Despite the growth in the use of global positioning systems, the need for paper maps and atlases is greater than ever, according to a provider of paper maps.

GPS systems won't make paper maps go the way of the buggy whip, Marc Jennings, president of paper mapmaker Langenscheidt Publishing Group, said Monday. One reason paper maps remain in high demand is their capability to provide a higher level of accuracy than GPS devices.

"When you grab quick directions from the Web, they give the illusion of coming from real time, but often they are not," Jennings said in a statement. "We work with government agencies that are actually building roads and providing licenses for new buildings or changes in buildings and streets."

A key reason paper maps continue to sell well is the role they fill in providing a total picture for a wide area, making it possible for users to "map out" places in relation to each other.

Langenscheidt Publishing, which makes maps in its American Map unit, maintains that the constant rebuilding and realigning of the U.S. highway system will mean that paper maps will always be in demand by consumers. In addition, many consumers purchase paper maps to be used in conjunction with GPS systems, Jennings said.