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I have 6 satnavs. This is the very best of them all, and its DREADFUL.
In a nutshell, any serious company could sweep the entire satnav market. Tom Tom could, but they love to pillage your wallet. Let me explain:-
This model (GO 910) has a screen suction mounting (chuckle). Well, it will stick to your screen, but there is no guarantee for how long. If you are male, it has an ability to detach itself and strike you so that you will have no more children! (Good joke Tom Tom, only I would prefer the Keystone Cops rather than writhing in agony). I could avoid the pain and allow it to bounce off the dashboard and smash with a tinkling sound, into the footwell, interfering with the vehicle contol pedals. However, I prefer to take the pain rather than the costs of unit replacement, or a vehicle accident because it interferes with the vehicle control pedals.
The suction screen mounting also leaves a wonderful evidence mark on the windscreen which lures thieves to your car in the hopes of smashing your side-windows to get a free satnav.
Tom Tom do no adequate vent mountings (failed again Tom Tom). The device is so enormous, so large as to generate its own gravitational field, that no other commercially available holder (eg those used for mobile phones etc) will fit.
You cannot mount this unit on a beanbag on your dashboard because the speaker that gives verbal instructions is mounted (can you believe it?) on the base. This effectively muffles the sound. Brilliant design (he said with irony).
The screen mounting unit has a ball and socket, 'constant friction joint'. I laugh again. This allows you to angle the device to the perfect angle for you! This last for all of 40 yards -until it slips and needs you to:
1 Drive with your head on your car pedals looking up at the screen with no view out of the windscreen (maybe its just me, but I reckon that this is dangerous?) OR
2 Constantly adjust it every 40 yards with your hand whilst the car is in motion (dangerous?) OR
3 Take it back to the store and demand your money back
The way I have got around thes above major inconveniences is by having a sheet metal worker pal manufacture a special cradle for the device, so that I can rest it on the dashboard. (Not an option open to all!)
Because the device demands that you use the supplied cradle (which relies on gravity to ensure electrical connection), any other means of mounting other than screen mounting via the dedicated cradle, means an imperfect electrical connection. This is infuriating! Any break in this connection due to uneven roads means that the device keeps asking whether you want to connect to the computer, and you have to press yes/no on the screen (again this is dangerous - it takes your hands off the wheel and your attention away from the road). Alternatively, it fails to charge and you run out of battery life.
Allegedly, the cradle/screenmount won some design award!!! (Can you belive that?? Whoever designed it probably failed his GCSE in design on the same day!)
If you have a problem, the device can be re-set (hurrah). Sadly, the reset button is very difficult to find, is well hidden and requires the use of a searchlight, a magnifying glass, and a bent paperclip or similar. Oddly, my car is not littered with paperclips and I find this a pain. The tip of a biro is not good enough!!! a pin or bent paperclip only (if you can find the cunningly hidden reset button)
This device has a range of irrelevant features, including the facility for viewing a slideshow (wow! who cares?) and other irrelevant facilities such as a remote control to operate the device (I Kid you not)
Good points - The software is beyond compare and is better than the other satnavs I own. Sadly, the newer replacement models are not as good. This is a complicated issue, so I leave you to comb the internet for details. It finds postcodes and addresses well, and gives good instructions. It will tell you whether you are speeding by giving a pinging sound, and will tell you whether there is a speed camera nearby. It constantly pings 'speed camera' throughout Swansea = but thats just the exhuberance and fetishism of Swansea Council for speed cameras and NOT a device fault.
THE FUTURE IS A CHARGING OPPORTUNITY
This device (and all other satnavs I own) were at least 3 years out of date when I first used them. This is a charging opportunity for the satnav firms. They pulled down your pants when they took a lot of money from you for the device, and now they are about to spank your bottom...regularly...expensively. The cost of updates for road and route changes, and for changes in speed camera positioning is exhorbitant! They recommend every 6 months....gasp!
Tom Tom have a good internet site with loads of expensive goodies (updates, voices, languages etc). Well done Tom Tom - I just cant afford it. However, if you need resolution to any problem with your device...forget it. The easiest resolution is to buy a new (competitors?) device.
Heres the bad news. I own 2 Garmins, 2 Tom Toms and another 2 (mobile phone operated, therefore expensive to run) satnavs. Tom Tom, despite their many, many, many failings, do the best in my opinion. I would like to set up a company to make a decently designed satnav, and become a millionnaire - the technology is there.
Mine has just failed after 3 years, and in the absence of better alternatives, I may just well buy another.
When I originally bought this, it was the top of the range for TomTom - UK, Europe and USA mapping, nice wide screen and loads of features. I also downloaded the speed camera database from the TomTom website (which was a freebie as a result of purchasing the 910) and I also searched the web to find loads of other freebies to tell me where my nearest Tesco, Sainsburys, John Lewis, Halfords, Petrol Station et al were wherever I was. So I ended up with quite a powerful and well featured SatNav.
Long term usage? After a while, it started to take a long time to lock onto satellites when we first switched it on, as long as 10 mins on some occasions - really frustrating when you are trying to find your way out of a town or city. Researching the issue on the web, I found that if I connected it to my computer, it was simply a matter of upgrading the software on the SatNav from the TomTom website. Not sure why the seeking performance should change, but when I did upgrade, it did markedly improve the satellite seek time.
Other issues? If you really want to keep the maps or the speed camera database up to date, it will cost you a small fortune with TomTom, and they are great at issuing out annual updates which means you pay every year. Maps wise I just put up with the fact that the SatNav thinks you are driving through a field when it doesn't recognise a new bypass that you are on, and eventually it just picks up the road again.
Big Issues? About a 18 months ago, I couldn't get the SatNav to charge up or work correctly when it was on the holder. Green power light came on, but it wouldn't charge the battery, which meant the SatNav wouldn't work. TomTom repaired it under warranty, and then it happened again a few months ago. The issue is that there is a 'delicate' 15 pin connector on the back of the SatNav that connects to the holder, and through time this flexes around during use and breaks the pin contacts with the circuit board. Search on the web and you'll see this is a common issue for this model. Result is that unless you are a black belt Ninja with a microscopic soldering iron to repair the contacts, your scuppered and the SatNav is becomes useless because you can't power it.
On their newer models, TomTom have changed their design for this, but there are still models around on the likes of eBay etc. So beware.
I bought my TomTom Go 910 back in 2007 when they were about the top of the line, for a road trip I was making to Ukraine. The reason I chose TomTom with its inbuilt world maps was the perception of better customer support than for satnavs from the likes of Mio, and the fact that UK, Western Europe, the US and Canada were all built in - I sometimes drive in the States too.
I find TomTom's clear, easy to understand maps and concise voice instructions easy to follow. However, I've had a few issues with the unit crashing, and it won't power up again afterwards. This has happened on a few occasions and requires you to stick a pin or similar into the 'reset' switch at the back next to the connectors. This serves to reboot the unit, after which it's fine.
The UK maps are excellent but I found driving through certain European countries where they've built lots of new roads in recent years - most notably Poland - meant it lost the plot and went off onto blank space. Happened a couple of times in Eastern Europe and is somewhat confusing when it does. Also the English voice struggles with foreign town names.
On a road trip across the entire US last year it really performed well, particularly with the American voice 'Mandy' added (the English 'Kate' had trouble with words like 'intersection'!)
All in all a very good unit which still stands up as a wholly competent sat nav today, despite being superseded by newer models.
Being an Ex-Pat from America, it is NOT particularly "easy" for me to navigate myself around the U.K. Lets just say when I first moved here, I ended up getting lost at every other roundabout. Yet, I was bound and determined to learn the area (including the new traffic laws....oh and the whole different side of the road deal). It was with a relutance of defeat that I went out and bought a GPS System. So, without further ado, say hello to Mr. TomTom GO 910.
I shopped around for a GPS system that would have maps for the U.S., Canada, Australia, Asia, AND Europe. It is almost impossible to find one (not used) for under 400 quid, which is why I actually had my parents purchase one for me and send it overseas to moi. After recieving it in the mail, I practically ripped the box to shreds in my effort to get to it. I thought " FINALLY , I can get somewhere on TIME for a change!"
Unfortunately, i'm not uber patient. Which means I didn't really go through the instructions in totality. To say that this GPS system needs a complete instruction read is the understatement of the year. But, I digress.....
After getting several papercuts on the cardboard box, I did the quick glance on how to turn the sucker on, and hightailed myself out to my car to test it out. The initial test was an absolute sucess. I only sat in the car for a few minutes putting in the pertinant details like my address, where I was going, and playing around with the touch screen. I thought to myself " ohhhhh goodie! I'll never get lost again!"
Fast forward to the next day.....
I got freaking LOST! First of all the re-route really didn't "re-route" me, it simply gave me the "vicinity" of where I was going. Which didn't help when your going to someones house.
Can I also say the 3D versus 2D features make it a little difficult to see? I have next to perfect eyesight and the thing was like a labernyth of inconsequential streets and details.
After my first-day-got-lost, fiasco, I simply chalked it up to myself not being well informed with the gadget itself. So, I spent several hours reading every bit I could about the 910. In reality , I could probably be the official Troubleshooter of this GPS syste for the TomTom company if they needed one.
Fast Forward to the Next day.....
I got LOST AGAIN......well sort-of. It's very good at keeping you in the "general area" of where you wish to go. When your wanting to go to a hospital though, you kinda need to...well....get to the flipping hospital. Instead, it took me to street that butted up behind the hospital. Not only did this cause me to be 20 minutes late, but a lot of swearing and spilt coffee was involved.
I understand that GPS systems are not the fairy godmothers of direction giving. You do have to be somewhat cognizant of that fact, and take the good with that bad. There have been times, where i've actually gotten to my destination using this just fine. Yet, the times where it's re-routed me in strange ways, and only gotten me in a particular "region" , instead of the exact address , have started adding up in staggering numbers.
If the tomtom GO 910 was a little less expensive or, had better updates on it's online maps, or wasn't as heavy and bulky, or if the touch screen was a little more user friendly, THEN maybe it would be a great GPS system. Giving it three stars is, in all honestly, being slightly generous. The reason I'm giving it 3 stars though, is because of the extra features that really came in handy.
The "Points of Interest", has helped me IMMENSELY on my vacations to France, Germany, and Scotland. Even my friends were impressed with it, and said they're OWN GPS's didn't have as detailed little "extra's" as this tomtom GO 910 had.
That being said, I am currently in the market for a new one that might be a little more user friendly for me and my easily lost self. So, if any of you readers out there are interested in a barely used for 6 months tomtom GO 910 that cost me around $400.00 on SALE (around 325 Quid), please let me know. I'll sell it too you for a steal! =)
Upon receiving a TomTom Go 910 as a gift, I opened the package and promptly set it up in my car to take it for a test drive.
With all your usual TomTom features such as spoken instructions, clear colour 2D and 3D display and an easy to use touch screen and new features such as a larger 4" screen, built in MP3 player, maps of Europe, USA and Canada and built in Bluetooth technology, things looked promising.
The only problems came when I started to really test it. I asked it to take me the shortest way home from a location that I knew like the back of my hand and I ended up doing an extra 4 miles than if I had just taken the route that I knew.
I could handle that, but when I actually used it in anger to take me from my home town in Wiltshire to an important exam in Liverpool it actually tried to make me use a track that was closed to vehicles........ twice!!
They were really my only problems when navigating with the TomTom GO 910, most of the time it gets you from A to B very well, and using it to find places that you've never been before is invaluable. Just tap in the postcode and house number and it takes you to the door.
Avoiding parts of the route is a good feature. Should you come up against a traffic jam on the motorway you can just tell the system to miss that part of the route and it will recalculate an alternative.
The only other negative thing I can say about it is that the voices can become a little irritating after a while, especially when you have the american voices that tell you to "turn left at the rotary" instead of the roundabout. Apparently though, to make it a bit more interesting, you can download comedy voices from the TomTom website such as John Cleese and Ozzy Osbourne!
So in summary, a good system, top of the TomTom range, but like all modern technology, it has it's glitches.
With TomTom GO 910 you have a whole world of car navigation in one box: TomTom's award-winning easy to use navigation software; best routes; 3D view and spoken instructions; instant route re-calculation; itinerary planning and thousands of Points of Interest.
The latest detailed maps of Europe and all the American and Canadian states are preloaded onto the GO 910's 20 Gb Hard Disc, which is big enough to accommodate everything from a database of safety cam locations to thousands of your favorite songs and photos.
Leave your phone in your bag or pocket and use your GO 910 for handling calls. Because with a compatible Bluetooth phone you can make or take a call with just a touch of the screen, or even let your GO 910 automatically pick up your calls for you. So you don't need a separate hands-free car kit anymore!
The GO 910 also comes with a remote control, so all these amazing functions can be operated from anywhere in the car, by you or one of your passengers. Making your journey even easier and even safer.
Easy to use: Extra wide 4" LCD touchscreen gives you smart design and easy to use navigation literally at your fingertips;
Maps of the whole of Europe, the USA and Canada on hard disk: Door-to-door navigation across Europe, the USA and Canada;
Clear spoken instructions, including street and place names: TomTom GO 910 speaks some 36 languages in over 50 different voices and can even announce street and place names;
Hands-free calling: doubles as a hands-free car kit using Bluetooth technology, so you can make & receive calls as you drive with just a touch of the screen;
Smart extras: built-in Mp3 player; 20 Gb (12 Gb free) of hard disk, enough for 1000's of songs and pictures; remote control; and much more.