Customer Review

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337 of 345 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars No nonsense GPS with a large screen, July 10, 2010
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This review is from: TomTom XXL 550TM 5-Inch Portable GPS Navigator (Lifetime Traffic and Maps Edition) (Electronics)
I got TomTom550TM about two weeks ago. It replaced my TomTom Go 730 with 4.3" screen.

This will be my 5th GPS device so far. I consider TomTom Go 730 a pretty modern GPS with a lot of good features, so I will review TomTom 550TM in comparison to that one.

Let me start with the cons:
- No Bluetooth hands-free, FM transmitter, SD reader, etc. But, I disabled the BT and FM in my Go anyway and I do not miss them at all.
- Fewer menu options; mostly due to missing extra functionality, and some regarding what is displayed on screen. I find displaying the current speed and the speed limit on the screen redundant, it would have been nice to have the choice to display perhaps the compass instead.

And the pros:
- Simple menu! Who cares about 8 things when you are trying to just enter a new address?
- Large screen is a relief to your eyes. Driving in summer is enough strain on the eyes.
- Clever interface. The lanes are clearly displayed on the screen at critical times.
- Reads names of streets just like the Go does (though this is a standard feature now).
- Last but not the least lifetime traffic and map updates. Traffic updates are a nice to have, though I never was in a situation that they were critical with my older TomTom GPS. However, map updates are a must. I found myself looking for non-existent ramps and exits more often in the last year, so 550TM with its lifetime map updates will hopefully get rid of such annoyances.

Update: I have two important bits of info. As others have already mentioned, the firmware upgrade added the option to view the turn-by-turn list of directions as text. This was probably the most significant missing feature that people felt the need for. Secondly, when I tried to update the map, I found out that I have never paired my gps with my TomTom account before. Which is bad news, because I already tossed the retail box which had the activation code. The good thing is, TomTom customer service was really helpful and within a day I got the incident solved. I had to send a copy of my purchase receipt and give them the serial of my gps, and that was it. Big relief, because I really like this GPS, and I am planning to keep it for a couple of years at least.
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The manufacturer commented on this review(What's this?)
Posted on Mar 31, 2014 8:27:36 AM PDT
Hello hoosier grad,

Thank you for the highly detailed review. At TomTom, these reviews provide incredibly useful feedback to our internal teams, and to other Amazon.com consumers seeking information on navigation.

As we launch new product lines, we look to engage users of our devices in a more direct conversation to help drive future product innovation and improvements. Based on your comprehensive review, we'd like to invite you to participate in this initiative. If you're interested in learning more, please email us at inbox.reviews@tomtom.com - so we can share more details. We look forward to your response!
 
 
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Comments

Tracked by 5 customers

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Showing 1-10 of 24 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Jul 15, 2010 6:27:16 AM PDT
I have a TomTomXL that is about 3 years old. It's dying - taking a long time to register and sending me on ridiculously long routes. I got a new Magellan and not happy with it - returning it. I really liked how TomTom would show the ETA as I'm driving. Turns out that is not a feature on all GPS's. Is that feature still present on this model?

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 15, 2010 9:32:43 AM PDT
hoosier_grad says:
Yes that feature is in this model too. It also shows time remaining.

Posted on Jul 17, 2010 9:51:08 AM PDT
E.S. says:
how's the traffic feature? does it update you adequately? I've read that TomTom's have a really small internal memory, which causes a major problem when updating maps; have you updated yours recently and did you run into any memory issues?

Posted on Jul 23, 2010 9:34:20 PM PDT
GPS_Techie says:
Unfortunately the TomTom XXL 550TM does not provide a list of turn-by-turn directions. That single lack of feature make this one of the most unwisely designed GPS.

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 29, 2010 1:19:34 PM PDT
hoosier_grad says:
I also found the lack of turn-by-turn directions odd. Generally, I prefer the route summary map though. But, this gps tries to draw every unrelated road on the summary map, which not only takes time, but also clutters the map with redundant roads.

Posted on Oct 19, 2010 6:02:46 PM PDT
I wanted to purchase this GPS for my husbands birthday. I dont really know too much about GPS decives and Ive been trying to look through different devices. Would you recommend TomTom over other brands? What about this model compared to other models?

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 19, 2010 7:05:05 PM PDT
hoosier_grad says:
I have no big complaints with this GPS so far (after 3.5 months of use). The traffic feature works well. And the routes that it selects are usually pretty good. I personally believe that the Tomtom user interface is one of the most usable ones out there.
As noted in one of the earlier posts, one big negative is that it does not show you a written list of directions. I did not use that feature in my previous GPS devices, so I didn't even notice the lack of it on this one before it was pointed out.
Overall I think this is a pretty good buy.

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 19, 2010 10:09:18 PM PDT
Christina,
GPS is in some ways, a personal choice. You may want to go to a Best Buy or similar electronics place to let one of the sales reps point out the differences. Things you may want to notice is size of the screen, contrast of color, ability to work it, and accuracy. (Search "Point of Interest" and enter in a few random locations you go to. I had challenges finding a "Lowe's" out of town.) I wouldn't spend more than $125. I'd definitely look for one that has lifetime updates.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 19, 2010 11:33:56 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 19, 2010 11:42:06 PM PST
Yes it does provide a list of turn-by-turn directions! After selecting your route and the TomTom has loaded your directions, tap "DONE", then, tap the lower right hand corner of the screen and you will get a "Details" button on the lower left hand side. Tap it and you have the "Browse as text" option, along with "Browse as images", "Browse map of route", & "Show route Demo". Selecting the "Browse as text" option gives you your list of turn-by-turn directions! Hope this is what you were referring to! This is a great option to use if you are driving in an area with a poor satellite signal. If you lose the signal, and your map, you can still follow your direction of travel by using this text list! Very useful in Pittsburgh, PA!!

Posted on Nov 24, 2010 3:07:29 PM PST
Alz says:
TomTom had a recent software update for the XL 350 and XXL 550 models, as well as other new models. The update added many features which were not in the earlier versions. The update is free and can be downloaded from TomTom Home.
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