I love driving my car, I frequently make trips to nearby cities and other interesting places around my area just so that I'm able to drive. While my driving skills are good (if not great) it is my sense of directions that always lets me down. No matter how often I visit a familiar area, I mostly end up losing track of directions on how to get there.
While I occasionally use Google maps with turn by turn navigation to drive to a certain place, it always eats up my cellphone's battery as if it's been on a never ending fast. I am then left with little or no battery for the rest of the day. This is what made me decide to buy a dedicated GPS navigation unit for my car.
Since I was on a strict budget, I didn't want to order something very fancy. I just needed a GPS unit that was pretty sturdy, looked good and delivered great performance in terms of directions. After a lot of research on the available GPS units in the market, I narrowed the search down to TomTom's Start 20 Navigation System. I ordered it online and received the product pretty soon as expected.
The device came well packed with protective casing around the unit to save it from inadvertent drops and bumps. The package included:
1. The GPS unit.
2. A Car charger.
3. A USB cable
4. Manuals and warranty cards.
Features of the GPS unit:
1. A 4.3 inch (11cm) touchscreen.
2. 4GB of inbuilt storage.
3. Matt finish over the screen thereby avoiding fingerprints.
4. In-built windshield/dashboard mount.
5. In-built speaker for turn by turn directions.
6. MicroUSB port for charging and data syncing.
7. Slot for a Micro SD card.
This device has an in-built battery that supplies power for approximately 2 hours on a full charge. The car charger that it came with can easily be inserted into the cigarette lighter slot and can be used to charge/supply power to the device.
TomTom offers its users a lifetime supply of maps/map updates that can be downloaded over the internet. All you need to do is connect your device to the computer via the USB cable and download updates from TomTom's website.
I've been using this device for a week now and so far I have not encountered a road/direction error by this device. Since this device gives directions when connected to satellites, one doesn't need an internet connection unlike mobile phones.
Information on display
While driving using this device you get a host of information. Turn by turn directions, your current speed, speed limit of the road, next turn and its distance, your ETA and the approximate time left to reach your destination, all on the main screen. With access to so much of information, my driving experience felt much enhanced.
While on busy intersections and confusing roads, the display will change into a dual screen automatically. While the left side will continue to show you turn by turn directions, the one on the right will show you important street signs and waypoints to look out for.
The user interface of this device is pretty easy to understand. The touchscreen responds well to touches considering it's a resistive screen and setting up a route is as easy as it can get. You can search for your destination by the street address, a point of interest, or even touch a particular point on the map to set it as your destination.
While driving back home from the airport a few days ago, I felt like having a Chicken burger at McDonalds. A quick search of McDonalds from the points of interest (POI) option landed me at one closest to me in under 10 minutes.
While driving on a road which has a flyover coming ahead, this device will alert you to either stay on the right hand side of the road or the left depending upon whether to take that flyover or not. This is one big advantage I experienced having used maps and navigation apps on my mobile phone as well. I can safely say that a dedicated GPS unit like this can make your drives much easier and comfortable.
While I am extremely satisfied with this product and cannot find anything negative to write about, I just wish if it could scan traffic in my direction and update me with alternate routes. But that would be too much to ask from this nifty little device.
The pricing on TomTom's official website and the box I received is Rs.9499 for this particular device, however you can easily get it at cheaper prices on the popular e-commerce websites. This device is a value for money proposition delivering quality navigation system for life at a low one time investment.
Overall I would rate this product as follows:
Build Quality: 9/10
I hope this article was useful to you and helped you decide if this GPS unit fits your bill. Please feel free to ask a question in the comments section below if you have one and don't forget to Subscribe to our YouTube channel for technology related videos.
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