TomTom’s LIVE services were the last big revelation in personal navigation devices. But a number of other manufacturers now offer similar services, even if none has surpassed the abilities of HD Traffic just yet. So TomTom needed something new to keep itself ahead of the competition, and here it is: the GO 1000 LIVE. TomTom promises the GO 1000 LIVE will be more reliable, faster and safer than ever before.
The GO 1000 LIVE certainly looks like a major innovation over the previous generation. The GO x50 series' appearance still markedly resembled the x20 series and generations in between. But the GO 1000 is a flatter device with rounder-looking corners. It's still a 4.3in widescreen sat-nav, and the version we were testing came with UK and Ireland maps.
The car mounting system has been completely overhauled, too. The mount used by the previous two generations was already easy to operate, as it contained the power connection so you didn’t need to attach this separately. The GO 1000 appears to take a step back, as power is on a separate cable again. However, both it and the mount itself are magnetic, in a similar fashion to current Apple MacBooks. So you leave the cable in place and the unit simply snaps into place and connects its own power when you bring it close enough into the mount.
This is a sleek system, and makes it quick to take the unit off the mount for easier use of the interface. As with most sat-navs, you may want to do this, since the new capacitive touchscreen can be a little fiddly to operate with just fingertips when the GO 1000 is in its mount.
This brings us to the other main design update over previous generations. The menu has been streamlined and simplified, and in our opinion, it’s about time too. If there was one thing that surprised us about TomTom sat-navs in the past, it was the flat, non-hierarchical nature of the menu system. Options were strewn across multiple screens in an almost random fashion, forcing you to scroll through pages to find what you were looking for, sometimes going full circle in the process.
Now, the main screen is just a single page with six options. These cover the most important categories, such as setting up a route from your current location, planning a route in advance, and accessing the LIVE services. Each one then drills down to successive menu levels, with a slider along the bottom telling you where you are when sub-menus have multiple pages. On a more minor level, the Done button now takes you right back to the map, rather than through the successive menu stages you traversed on the way to your current location.