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Re newsletter- Factory fit Vs PND
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PeteB
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Location: Hopton UK

PostPosted: Sat Dec 07, 2013 11:58 am    Post subject: Re newsletter- Factory fit Vs PND Reply with quote

My first factory fit (or any) SatNav was a 2000 model Toyota Yaris - list price was about 1,000, but because I was buying a LOT of extras I got it discounted to about 750.

I tried it on a demo car before ordering, and was impressed it had my little private Close in its database, as we weren't on any OS maps at the time.

It was very crude by today's standards; it used the LCD (black/white) low res radio screen. No maps, just twiddle a knob to move a cursor over an alphabet to enter town, street, house number. It just displayed a symbol for next major instruction and countdown distance, with ETA and distance to destination. At major junctions, a crude diagram appeared with an elongated arrow showing the path to take through it.

Two useful and unusual features were an arrow showing the direction of the destination (useful if not sure of turning, at least you knew the direction to aim for) and 3 levels of voice guidance (verbose, medium, minimal).

It was great (having had nothing to compare it with). Sadly, as the car approached 2 years old, it regularly showed my position about 200-300 yards behind where a I actually was, and the dealer was useless at trying to fix it. They kept trying to tell me this was normal (despite it not happening for the first 18 months), and I even resorted to videoing it from the rear seat showing the screen and view out the window - plotting the car approaching and traversing a roundabout after actually passing it! Dealer still useless.

Shortly after I changed cars and bought a Compaq iPaq Navigation kit for 1,000 - a box containing a pocket PC, satnav jacket, CF map card, screen mount and power lead. It had co-pilot software and was horrible - always falling off, software crashing, but when it worked, excellent maps. I splashed out about 125 on TomTom software, which was the most amateurish software product I'd ever bought, before or since. It often crashed completely if it got low on memory, usually requiring a reinstall from a PC before working again - I used to carry 2 spare CF cards so I could use it again before getting home to reinstall! Hopelessly inaccurate maps.

Despite this, I stuck with it and eventually bought a TomTom XL. I quite like this, but still feel they don't fully appreciate even fairly basic program design standards.

In 2011 I bought another Yaris, this time with a built in but removable TomTom. The only annoyance was not being able to turn the sound off whilst mounted in the car (you could when stand-alone)!.

I liked being able to take it out and program journeys in advance, and to still be able to use my library of POI files and saved journeys built up over nearly 10 years.

Last year I bought a Toyota Prius with built in Touch & Go+ satnav. This works fairly well for a built in, voice recognition is quite good, but I really miss being able to pre load journeys I've used before and my library of way points and POIs. It does have 7 digit post codes (after briefly reverting to 5 after an update) but many house numbers (including mine) are missing from its database. Updates (maps and software) are free for 3 years then horribly expensive, and are processed via a USB stick.

Map accuracy isn't too bad, has reasonably comprehensive and accurate POIs but where it displays speed limits these are often wrong (so is my TomTom - they are often wrong on different roads, and on some they're both wrong!)

TMC traffic is fairly useful - sometimes saved my bacon, sometimes reacted too slowly or shown holdups that have cleared. It has camera alerts, but I've turned them off (never liked them).

It is, however, very reliable and has never crashed (touch wood!).

The thing I like least is the crude way point option - only 4 possible vias, and they are gone once passed. If you do a return journey, or repeat trip, you have to enter them all again.

For that reason (and to get the TMC traffic), on longer journeys I usually use both!

Regards, PeteB
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IanS100
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 10, 2013 1:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've had various TomTom PNDs over the years, which I've been largely impressed with at the time, but now I use TomTom Android, which is very disappointing & BMW Pro Nav which is great, but as a 2,000 option it should be. I regularly run the Pro Nav & TomTom Android at the same time & whilst the routes often differ, I wouldn't say either wins hands down, where the TomTom does win however is in Traffic. TomTom HD Traffic is much better in every way than the BMW TMC Traffic, which regularly shows heavy traffic hours after it has cleared.
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Darren
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 12, 2013 11:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

In what way is TomTom's Android App disappointing?
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OurHutch
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 13, 2013 9:26 am    Post subject: 2009 Audi A6 Avant not bad but not great Reply with quote

I bought a new Audi A6 Avant in 2009 after using a Garmin. Because it could not upload speed cameras I found myself continuing to use both SarNav systems. The view on the Audi was much superior and it was easy to zoom in and out so I used that as a visual map and also for TMS traffic information which has improved markedly in accuracy over the past few years. This set up enabled me to more easily find some new diversions when in heavy traffic.

Downsides on the Audi were no full post code entry so going to football grounds etc where I only had post code I needed to know the road name too, I normally found this with the Garmin. Also the Audi told me to turn 20-40 yards ahead of a turning so that until I got used to checking the visual caused me to take a number of wrong turns.

When travelling in Europe I use the Audi for navigation, the Garmin for speed in KPH and my iPhone for other CT features so now have a triple system as I decided to remove the speed cameras from the Garmin. In the UK it's now a combination of Audi and iPhone apps such as Cameralert and Waze for traffic and Navigation although the Mrs does get fed up with all the voice overs when travelling or listening to the Radio.

As you can see I don't find the in built system capabilities meet all of my needs so supplement it with other SatNavs.
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changeman
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Joined: Jun 29, 2008
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 13, 2013 9:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I now have a 2006 Honda Accord with inbuilt satnav which I have recently updated.
Compared with my Garmin Nuvi, it is a very poor substitute.
Graphics are very basic, Honda updates are 130+, do not include speed cameras and I cannot find any way to load updates from a 3rd party such as yourselves. The lack of speed cameras is particularly galling as I now have to mount my Garmin on the windscreen if I am going on any route I do not frequently travel.
I have seen exactly the same display on a friends new Freelander, so no improvements in recent years.

Regards
Chris
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philai3
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Location: Manchester, UK

PostPosted: Fri Dec 13, 2013 9:40 am    Post subject: Renault Tom Tom Reply with quote

I'm very happy with my in-built Renault Tom Tom, I've had two so far and there have been minor but useful updates. For instance, on the older model (2010), the radio would mute completely for any output from the SatNav, whether a spoken direction or the speed camera beep. The new one (2013) just reduces the volume on the radio a little each time, which is far easier on the ears! The map updates and speed camera updates (from PGSW) have always worked flawlessly.

My other car (MX5) has no in-built Satnav, so I use a Garmin 1310 in that. I do get the occasional blank screen, which takes a few seconds before it redraws the map (usually at some complicated junction!). To be honest, I just about prefer the Tom Tom, but there is very little in it.
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Darren
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 13, 2013 9:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Renault deserve some credit for partnering with TomTom. At least you get a satnav that is near current and has the ability to install POIs easily.

I'm surprised Garmin have yet to secure an in-dash deal.

The best solution by far will be support for mirror-link type solutions that allow you to have your smartphone app on the in-dash display. But, like Betamax/VHS there are competing standards and it's destined to fail unless agreement on a single standard can be made.
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nicksmithassociates
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Joined: Feb 27, 2009
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 13, 2013 9:50 am    Post subject: Factory-Fit and In-Dash SatNav Systems Reply with quote

Up until 2009 I had a number of HP IPaqs running a separate sat nav which I cannot remember the name of. Since then I drive a 2009 Volvo V70. The SatNav was a 1800 optional extra although it was thrown in if I ordered the car by a specific date which I did so no cost option.
I recently bought an upgrade to a give me new maps which cost 170 which also upgraded the software, now in colour!
I have heard many people criticize the Volvo system but I find it excellent. It is the older system that runs of a DVD (later ones run off a hard drive) The DVD needs to be changed if you driver to Belgium, Germany or Spain most of France is on the UK disc.
One of the functions I like the most is the traffic alerts which download through the radio? Apparently. This tells of problems on route and offers alternative but I do fid the data sometimes is a little out of date.
I have not tried to upload the dataset to the Volvo system as I have my Android phone at the side of course with pocket GPS app running which I would not be without.
Regards


Nick
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etaf
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Joined: Oct 30, 2006
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 13, 2013 1:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

i purchased a garmin satnav in 2006 and was very please with it - worked great and had traffic info

in 2007 i purchased a pre-reg saab 93 (so new , but already had options fitted)
this had a built in sat nav - normally a 2000 option, but free with this special addition. also maps updated to 2006

and it also has traffic info
i found out that
a) it would not accept a post code entry - crazy ... and sometimes it did not find the location - so i had to use the garmin to then find the place and see if i could find a street near by...
b) it would cost 450 for a updated dvd , so its never had that update, as i can buy an all singing dancing sat nav for that price
as its a big screen - i guess at some point in the future i will end up using a portable satnav stuck to the screen Smile Smile

so i'm not surprised by all the entries for these very poor device built into cars
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chief1
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 13, 2013 1:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have a Becker Map Pilot in my Mercedes. On the whole it works ok, but is not as good, nor does it have as many features as my older Garmin unit. I like that I can plug the unit in to my PC to check for software and map updates as opposed to paying huge sums for an update via dvd.

My real issue here is Becker customer service, it is useless. My unit was replaced recently under warranty, and it took me over 12 weeks to get them to transfer my subscriptions, maps and POI, from my old unit to the new unit. OK, they had technical issues, which by the way should not have been there anyway, but at no stage did they update me, or consider other options to get me back the products I had already purchased. When I tried to escalate the problem I was told it was with level 2, so I there was nothing they could or would do. Several times their call centre said they would call me back, but they never did.

So, I guess my key message here is that Becker Map Pilot is not as good as my older Garmin (Nuvi 1690) unit, extras cost more, the unit is less flexible, but I like that I can update it via my PC, and I like how it integrates into the car, including the screen. But god help anyone who has to deal with their customer service.
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Milesey
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 13, 2013 1:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I bought a Mazda 6 with a built-in TomTom NB1 satnav. The functionality is a bit like a cross between what you find on a 1005 LIVE and a 940 LIVE. For just navigating, for me it's far better than any other built-in unit I've used (about a dozen or so via rentals and 4 of my own). Until recently, there were major issues with the LIVE service, but these are more-or-less solved (minor gripes remaining).

For many months, I've used the 1005 and the NB1 at the same time. It's a shame the functionality isn't more the same as the 1005 though. The way the 1005 can operate in 2D mode with autozoom of the remaining journey is a great feature of the 1005. Now, due to theft, I'm using just the NB1 which being wire-free and more theft-proof, on balance is the better option. POIs, etc all work fine (via SD card).

If not for the LIVE issues (which were handled very poorly over the period), I'd recommend this highly. I hear from Mazda though, that they will not be using TomTom for new models due to the issues that the LIVE service problems caused them.
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DennisN
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 13, 2013 2:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Darren wrote:
Renault deserve some credit for partnering with TomTom. At least you get a satnav that is near current and has the ability to install POIs easily.

DON'T YOU BELIEVE IT!!! You're talking about the OLD Renault TomTom, the Carminat. The NEW thing, R-Link (800+ option) is a different animal (certainly doesn't have the ability to install 3rd party POIs). It was introduced some months ago and being included in the spec of my new van which I ordered mid February, the failing R-Link System delayed the delivery until end of July. I have today collected mine back from the dealership, supposedly working - the fourth time they've had it in to put it right. I have yet to run it apart from back to Home, so I will be posting a review here when I get going again. In the meantime, I got my new vehicle with R-Link on 1st August and it was rubbish and even now I have still not got the "sixty days" free latest map update - it came with map UK/ROI v905 - on it's first lengthy visit to the dealership they returned it to me with map v900.4621. The latest map available to purchase/download is v915.5119, 55, but my device can't get it for free (yet?). Maps are only available by download from the Renault website which is so slow that page refreshing is worse than paint drying! Dealership told me this morning that R-Link will phone me and them when my map update becomes available. R-Link help desk are adamant that their map version numbers (progressivley v900, v905, v910 and v915) are NOT the same numbers as TomTom, so they do not have v920 and v915 is the most up to date. Mine hasn't worked properly since I got it over four months ago, so I shall see what it's like now they've fixed it. The R-Link helpdesk is not as good as TomTom's. What hope is there for me? Rolling Eyes
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xos8249
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 13, 2013 3:15 pm    Post subject: Audi Q5 MMI sat Nav Reply with quote

I have had two factory fit Audi MMI sat nav units since 2008, the latest being a hard drive based model in the Audi Q5 from 2011. I also have an old TomTom unit which serves as my baseline. Although generally the Audi unit is reasonably capable once you get used to its foibles, compared to the venerable TomTom the Audi unit has three major drawbacks.

1) It has not got 7 digit postcode entry
2) it has no touch screen, so postcode entry is done by selecting letters and numbers on screen using a rotary switch and a push button for accept. Painfully slow.
3) It has no facility to download Points of Interest, so no speed cameras or anything not on the included Audi POI database (which is a bit patchy).

the Audi unit does have an address book, and does store input locations, which gets around some of the postcode limitations, but that doesn't help for new ad-hoc locations.

I generally run the old TomTom in parallel if I'm gong anywhere that I am not familiar with, if only for the speed camera warnings.
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Jules59
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 13, 2013 6:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have a 2009 BMW 3 series. The map display is good but the Sat Nav is very poor for a vehicle costing 45K when new. It only uses partial post codes and when i was in Germany it couldnt find Nurburg (the home of the Nurburgring; BMW's testing ground !) . I hate to think how much a map update costs. I never use it now and always use my phone. I used to use Google navigator until they ruined it with the recent changes and now use Waze; but that can be very slow to redirect if you dont stay on the original route offered.

My wife wont have a Freelander with Sat Nav, as the SN occupies a very useful box on the dashboard she says. She uses her TomTom and doesnt want anything else.
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alastair121
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 13, 2013 9:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have a 2013 Golf GT which comes with Discover Media GPS Navigation as standard which means it always with you. However, no Postcode search is a pain. Updates require you over write the very expensive SD card that it comes with so I've not had the courage to do it yet. POI icons are very intrusive but live traffic updates are good.
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