Top critical review
90 people found this helpful
Spend a few bucks more and get text to speech
on December 15, 2007
I bought the TomTom One 3rd edition with the leather case and home charger for $162.00. It's my 4th GPS device; two are built-in units and one is a Garmin i5.
The TomTom is ok; I don't miss the larger screen because the screen quality is fine. It's very easy to set up and get going, and TomTom's website is nicely coordinated with the products and very easy to use, unlike Garmin's site that seems ancient and unfriendly.
However, there are a couple of issues that new GPS owners should be aware of. First, although the TomTom One 3rd edition is simple, it's almost too simple. It gives very few spoken instructions. "Right Turn Ahead" doesn't tell you much at all when it's given a couple of miles from a turn. The next warning is "Turn right in 800 yards."
800 yards?? When's the last time you measured anything in yards? My old Garmin i5 says "In 3 tenths of a mile, turn right." Much better -- car odometers are in tenths of a mile, not yards! But then the TomTom waits until the last 100 feet or so to tell you "Turn right." I found this warning to come too late on the 2-3 lane state roads in busy south Florida while on a trip.
There are no options to change the measurement from yards to tenths or feet, only meters. I can understand not having text to speech (although I'm sure every GPS will have it probably within a year, even the cheap ones), but how about some more instructions to help us get around?
I found that I have to look at the TomTom GPS much more than any other GPS I own, which is dangerous. It just doesn't give me enough verbal information. Although the map is clear (3D is a gimmick, use 2D instead) and it has a neat feature to zoom in as you approach an intersection, it doesn't give enough information on the upcoming roads. Mine seems to always display the road I'm on, both on the bottom of the screen and the top. It should display the street name of the next upcoming turn on top, but it doesn't.
All in all, it's an ok device, but as an experienced GPS owner, I can't recommend it for first-time GPS owners. My 3 year old Garmin i5 provides more information, although Garmin's upgrade policies, awful software that crashes every computer I try it on and their unfriendly website forced me away from the company.
My advice? Spend the extra money and get something with text to speech that provides more verbal info. You don't really need to look at a gimmicky map and instructions on a tiny screen -- you should be watching the road. Verbal instructions are way more important, but this fact is hardly emphasized in any GPS reviews. Take it from me...