The Local Search system available with other Navmans can also be used with the S100. This provides a European-wide database, supplied by Infobel, which includes many more POIs than are stored on the unit itself. We found lots of local facilities, such as schools and pubs, which would never be included in any sat-nav POI selection. However, the searching can only be performed via the NavDesk PC software, and the results downloaded to the device over USB. Unlike Navman’s S90, S70 and S50, the S100 inexplicably has no Bluetooth built in. There is a Navman S150 with Bluetooth available in Australia, but like the S200 this hasn’t been released in the UK, and Navman tells us this model won’t be coming to this region.
For the money, you might also expect the S100 to include RDS-TMC or European maps. The Navman S90i is now a little cheaper, and has TMC built in, and so is the TomTom GO 530 Traffic. But this is in fact a UK maps only device, although full European maps come on the supplied disc and can be unlocked by purchasing a code, saving a large download. You can add traffic updates via a TMC accessory kit (likely to cost around £50), and there is a configuration icon ready in the menu for this once installed. Yet again, a S300T model not yet available in the UK will have a traffic receiver as standard. The S100 also includes a trial of safety camera information. Like other Navmans, this lasts a year and then you pay £34.95 a year or £69.90 for three years, which is a little more than TomTom charges.
The Navman S100 is a bold and innovative sat-nav in a number of areas. But it also still misses out on neat features now found on more than one competitor’s products, in particular the ‘active dock’, which integrates power and traffic connections into the screen mount itself. The Spirit interface looks very nice and follows the latest Apple-inspired trends. However, we found it quite finicky, and in some areas more difficult to use than Navman’s previous, less trendy front end. When you’re heading off in your car, the last thing you really need is to deal with something fiddly, and unfortunately this first outing for Spirit is just that. So we recommend looking elsewhere until Navman has made Spirit more reliable, and released the more feature-rich devices already available in other regions.
Score in detail