Hello all! I’m back with another review for you, this time I’ve got the ever popular TomTom for review that was provided by Geeks.com. Specifically it’s the TomTom One Xl-s, and it has a bright 4.3” touch screen display and it even has Bluetooth so you can pair it with your cell phone to get updates. I’m accustomed to TomTom navigation since I already have it installed on my Tilt, but a stand alone device is much better really. Geeks has many cheap GPS devices in stock, and by cheap I mean inexpensive, so one of these can make a great holiday gift for that person in your life that doesn’t know which way to go… I’ve got several pictures for you and even an unboxing video as well, along with of course my thought and impressions of the TomTom One XL-S, so read on…
Here’s the specs and feature for you, you can read the rest over on the product page HERE at Geeks.
TomTom One XL-S 4.3" Touchscreen Portable Bluetooth GPS Navigation System w/USA & Canada Maps & Text to Speech
Never get lost again!
The TomTom One XL-S is preloaded with US and Canada maps to get your vacation going. Want to visit the Rockies? Mt. Rushmore? Niagara Falls? Just punch in the address or use the thousand points of interest to navigate to your destination!
With the text to speech, you can safely navigate the streets and highways without worrying about watching your GPS for upcoming turns. With 21 languages supported (and more through the text to speech), your turn by turn directions will be loud and clear.
The XL-S also supports extra services through TomTom Plus Live Services. Get traffic updates, updated fuel prices or even use Google Local Search. Just sync your supported Bluetooth phone and have easy access to update maps and all other TomTom services.
General Features: – Portable and easy-to-use – 4.3-inch touchscreen – GPS Navigation System – Map of US and Canada pre-installed (latest maps guaranteed through TomTom with paid service) – Bluetooth Connectivity – Text to Speech – Fast route (re-)calculation – QuickGPSfix – Millions of Points of Interest pre-installed – Easy access to traffic information – Clear visual and spoken instructions – Changeable playback voice for voice commands – Free access to TomTom HOME – Secure Digital (SD) slot for additional maps (SD card not included)
Technical Specifications: – 4.3-inch full TFT color LCD touchscreen (480 x 272 pixels, 64,000 colors) – High sensitivity GPS chipset – 64 MB RAM – CPU 266 MHz – Internal 1 GB Memory – SD slot – Bluetooth 2.0 – Internal Lithium-Ion battery (2 hours operation) – Operating temperature: 14 °F to 131 °F
First up I’ve got a video unboxing for you then some still pictures of the product and the contents of the box:
Included with the GPS unit is a USB cable, car charger, assorted printed materials, window mount and permanent mount.
The window mount is a suction cup which works well. You can also use the included semi-permanent mounting option which consists of a plastic disc with adhesive on one side. You can just stick it anywhere you like and then attach the suction cup to that so you don’t have to attach to your window. In some states it’s actually illegal to attach anything like a GPS to your window, so this is a good option especially for those areas.
The TomTom unit itself is small, it fits in the palm of your hand basically. It has a nice large 4.3” touch screen. There is an LED indicator on the front near the bottom on the left side.
On the bottom you’ll find the connections USB for power and data along with the SD card port.
On the back you’ll find the place where you attach the mount and and external antenna connector.
The top just has the power button.
The TomTom One Xl that I got for review is a refurbished unit, but it looks brand new. I examined it closely and didn’t find any scuffs or other marks on it.
Here’s a picture of it installed in my car, I took it with my phone actually. I blacked out the license plates for privacy reasons of course. Installation was easy, just stick the suction cup on the window and your done really. I found though that you’ve got to really make sure it’s attached, a couple times I thought it was attached but it fell off and slid across my dashboard onto the floor… fun-fun!
So the first thing you’ll need to do is charge the TomTom before using it, this is easy just plug it in via USB to your computer and it will charge.
You’ll need to get the TomTom Home software from the TomTom website if you want to update maps, add voices and do other customizations to your TomTom. Here’s just a few screen shots of TomTom Home, there’s much more to it than this. With TomTOm Home you can add voices, Points of Interest, Car Symbols, Arrival Sounds, Routes and even change the Start-Up image. It’s really worth it to install the software on your computer.
So after I charged the TomTom Device I tried to hook it up to my computer and sync with TomTom Home software and there I ran into problems.
When I plugged it in my computer wouldn’t recognize the TomTom, well it did, but it said I needed to format the device first. I did a bunch of research and couldn’t find anything about this error, expect if I was using an SD card, which I wasn’t. So I did it, I formatted the device and it was then ready to use, but it turns out I deleted the maps that were on the device…. I wasn’t expecting that at all, so I had to contact TomTom support and explain things to them.
This is a refurbished unit remember? Well once on the phone with TomTom support I found that my TomTom GPS was still registered to the previous owner. it wasn’t a big deal, he understood the problem once I explained it was a refurb unit, he then registered it to me with no hassles.
Once we straightened that out, they happily gave me a credit for the US and Canada maps for my device, I just synced my TomTom to the software and it downloaded and installed the maps for me.
I did run into one other small problem, it turns out you can only have ONE TomTom device attached to an email account. I already have TomTom on my Tilt cell phone, so I had to register the this GPS with another email account.
Using TomTom is easy, I’m already accustomed to it since I’ve got it on my phone, so there were no real surprises for me.
I got GPS fix in a matter of seconds even with a cold boot, and it didn’t seem to matter if was a clear day or a rainy/snowy, overcast day.
GPS devices are great for getting places where you really don’t know where you’re going, that’s one of their main functions right?! Anyway, I know my way around Pittsburgh very well, but I told TomTom where I wanted to go and let it run while I drove. I didn’t follow the directions that TomTom gave me though, I’ve lived here all of my life and I know the shortcuts and quickest ways to get where I need to go. I also know what and where to avoid at certain times of the day.
For example I pick my son up from pre-school near the end of the day, if I had followed TomTom directions to get home I would have been sitting in traffic that was sitting still for quite a long time. I’m from here, I know when I can drive certain ways and when I can’t. I hate sitting in traffic and have learned to avoid it anyway I can.
My ways might be a little bit longer according to TomTom, but a those times of the day my ways end up to be quicker at getting me to where I’m going.
TomTom One XL is Bluetooth enabled so I tried it with a couple phones. it worked fine with my Tilt, but it said the correct software wasn’t installed on the Droid.
You can also see in the above picture that I changed the car icon on the TomTom. I own a dark blue 2009 Subaru Forester and it just so happened that there was an icon that matched my car perfectly that I got through the TomTom Home software. The icon is a view from the back of the car so it’s kinda neat, and my kids think it’s really cool that our car is on the GPS. I had to explain things to them about GPS, they thought it was actually a picture of our car and couldn’t figure out how the satellites saw our car.
So as far as navigation it works well, but you’re better off going your own way really if you can, TomTom doesn’t take into account traffic patterns and such. This is the standard version I mean, as I received it. You can buy traffic information and things like red light camera spots through TomTom Home Software, but again it’s not free so I’m not even going there in this review. This review is for the unit as is.
I do like it very much, the screen is nice and large and clearly visible. The graphics are crisp and clear and the GPS updates your position almost instantly, there’s about a 1 sec lag which isn’t much.
I do have an issue with battery life, I didn’t use it for a few days and took it out of my carrying case and found the battery was dead. Not sure why this happened, I thought I had charged it fully, but maybe I didn’t. Also about the charging, it takes a long time to charge it via the USB port on your computer, it would be nice if a regular AC adapter/charger was included with it. Yes you can use the included car charger, but who wants wires hanging around there car?! I don’t…
Overall I think the TomTom is a great device for getting from place to place, and since this one includes maps for the United States and Canada you can go almost anywhere in North America with it. One thing I don’t like though is that you’ve got to pay for updates to the maps, so basically after the initial purchase you still have to pay more to TomTom to keep your device updated. Then of course you can even spend more money for the extras as well.