Review: Good Touch And Looks Standard In TomTom 1050 Navigation System

Written by Matthew Lentini     22/12/2010 | 00:12 | Category name i.e.AUTOMOTIVE

The new TomTom Go 1050 has a lot going for it apart from it's looks. One stand out feature is ease of use which is important as we have seen a lot of navigation devices this year that struggle when it comes to touch screen performance.


This navigation system is more of a luxury model than most  GPS navigation system we have reviewed this year.

With a RRP of $449, the unit features a 13 cm capacitive touch screen atop a plastic and metallic casing that adds a stylish touch to a practical navigation tool.

The capacitive touch screen that TomTom dubs 'Fluid Touch' is the star feature on the Go 1050, offering more of a tablet feel than the typical GPS unit that tends to only offer resistive touch. This feature shines when browsing TomTom's up-to-date library of WhereIs maps, where a simple pinch, splay or swipe of the finger across the sensitive screen almost seamlessly allows users to roam free around the map, finding points of interest, routes from any level of zoom and the clever touch of being able to navigate to any point the user picks. An extensive database of interest points, including small restaurants and shops, adds that extra touch of simplicity without even needing an address on hand, straight out of the box.

Reminding drivers never to rely solely on a GPS navigator's advice, the Go 1050 has a tendency of missing safety cameras with its safety camera warning software that is otherwise a handy feature. The screen displays a convenient yet subtle beep warning and indicator in the top left corner of the display when coming across red-light/speeding cameras along with a nominal metre indicating when the driver moves out of the camera's range.

Not to mention the ignorance of the concept of 'No Right Turn'. If you're taking main roads and highways or just a suburban crawl, this isn't much of a big deal and many GPS devices fall under the same trap, but inner city cruising and driving through backstreets could catch you out when the GO 1050 fails to identify when you can and can't turn right at many intersections.

The 13 cm screen makes this a bulkier unit to sit on your windscreen, but the pros vastly outweigh the cons here. The large display makes multi-lane turning support extra accessible, meaning you'll never miss your turnoff on the motorway, with expansive lane arrows that clearly represent each lane and upcoming turnoff without compromising the rest of the map thanks to the display size.

The metal exterior backing ties into the magnetic window mount that makes the device a breeze to pop on and off the windscreen bracket while still holding firmly onto the bracket while you're driving, no matter how recklessly you brake. A simple clockwise twist of the ring on the suction cup securely locks the mount to the windscreen and vice versa. It's dead simple with little risk of the mount falling from the glass.

At $449, this device is one of the best GPS navigators on the market, easily outweighing the Navman MY75T for the same price. The capacitive touch screen is as 'fluid' as they advertise, and adds a new element to GPS navigation, where on-the-fly map browsing either before or during your journey lets users take greater control over their navigation than ever before.

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Pros & Cons

Pros:

13cm capacitive touch screen; new, simple interface; quick performance; customisable menus; map browsing function; loud speaker

Cons:

Misses many safety cameras and no-right-turns; ineffective at voice commands; heavier than most competitors