Product Type: Tomtom in GPS Navigation
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A SatNav that I trust!
Tomtom VIA 135
Member Name: Jcm222
Tomtom VIA 135
Advantages: Lane assist, easy to use
Disadvantages: Poor screen resolution, poor touch sensitivity
OK, I know what you're going to say, the SatNav looks old and clunky, and I admit it does, but that's only physically, once you get it switched on your opinion of it will change dramatically, as you see how easy it is to use. As I say in the title, I actually trust this satnav to get me to the place I want!
The screen on the SatNav is just under 5 inches, which is a great size for the product. The problem with the display however, is the quality, without understanding the technical detail (it's 480 x 272 pixels for those who do), I can tell the quality on my SatNav is around two years behind the times! But to be fair, we're not using the SatNav to watch HD films, and as long as it can get me to my destination easily, I'm happy!
The menu is not much better and it appears quite clunky and old fashioned, but this means it is not complicated and is very easy to use.
The base model of the SatNav only has UK and Republic of Ireland maps built in, but can be expanded by buying TomTom SD cards or downloads.
When you enter the menu, you can do the old fashioned process of keying in your destination, but if you frequently navigate to the same place, you can set favourites and presets, which have their own icon, for example in my case, I have "Home", "Work" and "Mum and Dad's".
Another great feature is the Lane Assist service. It is fantastic! When you are driving up a big motorway (not like we have many in Belfast!), you can get a 3D view of the road, whereby it shows all the lanes, the corresponding actual roads signs, and arrows to get you into the right lane. I was really excited about this feature when I read about it, but I am so glad to say... IT ACTUALLY WORKS! So far I have not had any problems with it.
It also has spoken street names, so not only will it tell you to 'turn left' but will add the 'onto Green Road', this helps the stress out of trying to determine which out of the 10 possible left turns is the one they mean 700 yards away!
There is also Parking Assist which is a special service set up to help you find car parking spaces, to be honest, it's not that great and often I am driving past a car park that it failed to register.
There is inbuilt hands free car calling, which helps you to answer your mobile phone, but to be honest, It is no better than loudspeaker on my actual handset, or using a headset which can be bought for under a tenner!
The product really surprised me, it doesn't look like much, but there are lots of great features like the Lane Assist and the Spoken street names. On the other hand, being an Apple fanboy, I am used to very touch sensitive and responsive products, but here sometimes you really have to press the screen in, in order to get it to register.
But for the price of under £150, one cannot complain, I really would recommend this as a first time SatNav, but not if you already own a fully functioning, fairly up to date TomTom model.
Summary: A good first SatNav, at a very affordable price
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