An issue I found while navigating is that then when the GPS signal becomes weak the software tends to freeze. It also repeatedly gives out a, ‘GPS signal too low’ message, which quickly gets annoying, though this can be turned off in one of the options. By way of contrast, the TomTom GO features Assisted Satellite Navigation which continues to guide you even without a signal. This means that it behaves much more gracefully when the signal temporarily goes down.
One thing that I’ve come to rely on with my TomTom GO is the free speed camera database downloadable from here. This also works with the Destinator but has to be imported and converted to the correct format using the Destinator Console. I also had trouble with the POI database with many entries I was expecting to find, such as Banks, not available. It also took me a while to realise that to get a POI category to show on the map you need to activate it, and this is done by selecting an eye like icon to the left.
One feature that is quite handy is a permanent on screen ‘Home’ button’. This can be set to an address of your choice, so you can always navigate there at the touch of a button. Another touted feature is seamless cross border navigation. However, though I’d copied the Major Roads of Europe onto the PDA I couldn’t get it to plan a route and instead it kept falling back to the default map.
All in all Destinator PN impressed me with its powerful features and routing ability but it has to be said that I wasn’t completely convinced. Its interface is just too quirky, brimming with strange icons that don’t mean much to the uninitiated. By comparison TomTom Navigator is much more immediate. What’s more, the latest version matches Destinator for features and exceeds it in some areas. Destinator’s support for TMC might have made for a useful and not to mention, cheaper alternative to TomTom’s Plus service, (which offers live traffic data and more), but it’s not much use in the UK without compatible GPS receivers.
Destinator is a well featured and powerful piece of software but the interface is quirky where is should be intuitive making it difficult to use at times. While it certainly makes for an interesting alternative if I were laying down my cash, I’d still go for TomTom.