TomTom's LIVE was a revelation when it first arrived a year ago in the shape of the GO x40 series. In fact, it was so groundbreaking that its successor feels like a far more muted affair in comparison. The new GO x50 LIVE range, represented here by the top 950 model, offers much less radical improvements than its predecessor did. But it still has some important new additions to its arsenal.
The device itself is physically the same as before, and uses an identical screen mount and PC docking system as the x40 series. So once you have the car mount attached and wired up, you can slip the device into it without plugging in any other cables. But there are a few changes to the initial map screen. The interface is just that little more pleasing to the eye, thanks to rounded corners to the various onscreen boxes. The traffic strip on the right is slightly easier to read, too, and transitions between interface views are now animated.
The most major addition here is an icon onscreen offering direct access to the facility to report new speed camera locations. Clicking on this lets you indicate additional mobile and static cameras at your current position, or you can call up a more detailed menu to report recently added average speed sections, traffic light cameras, and toll road surveillance. These reports are then uploaded from the device for checking by Road Angel, which supplies TomTom's safety camera database. Regular dynamic updates are also one of the services LIVE provides over its mobile data link, so the safety camera database should be as up to date as any currently available.
The other major addition can be found when calculating a new route. After the sat-nav has figured out which roads to use, the resulting screen offers a panel on the right with two tabs. The second of these is called LIVE Snapshot, and hosts a trio of LIVE-related information abstracts. These include a traffic summary, the cheapest petrol on your route, and the number of safety cameras you will come across.
You can click on any of these three to call up more details. The traffic panel shows a breakdown of the delays calculated by HD Traffic and IQ Routes. Alongside this is a summary map of current jams in the vicinity of your route, although a less detailed version is already shown in the main summary display. You can also flip through the various incidents on your route, and choose to avoid them if desired.
The cheapest petrol section clicks through to the LIVE Fuel Prices menu, where you can locate the lowest-cost filling stations on your route, nearby, in a given area, or you can search by distance or price. Pressing the final LIVE Snapshot section calls up the menu for Safety Camera preferences, which also includes another menu option for reporting safety cameras.