When GPS is good it stops us from getting lost, when it’s bad it gets us lost. This, in a line, sums up the problem with Global Positioning Systems. It’s why they’ve not yet taken over the world and why we still need to ask for directions. Consequently one of the manufacturers whose systems less frequently tell users to turn left while driving on a bridge has gone back to basics.
The result is the “ONE” from TomTom and, much like the Star Wars prequels, it uses the industry’s latest cutting edge technology to try and create a stripped down starting point for the series. Unlike the Star Wars prequels, however, the ONE actually looks like it might make a decent fist of the task in hand since it uses the new SiRFstar III chipset (a favourite of rival Garmin) famed for its accuracy even under weak signals and its low power consumption.
Backing this up is a nippy 380MHz processor, 32MB RAM and a 3.5in 320 x 240 colour LCD touchscreen which comes with an antiglare coating (vital since driving tends to take place outside…). It shares the same intuitive operating system as higher models in the range (Benny really liked an earlier edition of it when he reviewed the Go last year), and spoken directions along with an automatically speed adjusted volume are standard. Trips can be edited via the usual preferences such as the quickest or shortest route and girlie types can choose to avoid motorways.
TomTom has also been good enough to integrate Bluetooth into the ONE like it has on its more expensive products meaning you can hook up a Bluetooth mobile phone and access TomTom Plus services including weather, traffic and additional voice downloads. As with the Go 300, the ONE will use SD cards to store navigation maps.
Catch the TomTom ONE before Chrimbo for 399 euros. It could make a cracking gift for granny, especially if someone can modify it so you’ll be able to strap it to her back and programme in your home floor plan.