Perhaps the biggest change with the GO 1000, however, is how it calculates its routes. The traditional system is to do this dynamically, trying out the options according to a pre-programmed algorithm until the fastest or shortest distance is found. Successive innovations provided options like avoiding motorways, and even routes providing the best petrol consumption. A number of companies, TomTom included, now take into account historic traffic data to provide the real average speed on roads, rather than the maximum possible or a percentage thereof. In TomTom’s case, this is called IQ Routes.
But all this data takes the processor in a sat-nav a significant time to mull over. Throw in live traffic updates as well and there’s even more delay in calculating your route. So the GO 1000 takes a different tack. It doesn’t calculate routes on the spot at all. Instead, it comes pre-programmed with every single route option between every point A to every point B on a country’s map. So, in theory, all it needs to do is look up your start and finish points in its database and the route will already be there. In theory, this should make route discovery nearly instantaneous whether you’re travelling 10 miles or 10 thousand.
In reality, we didn’t find the GO 1000 was quite that speedy, but it was noticeably quicker than other sat-navs we’ve tested at route discovery, taking just a few seconds where other models might take tens of seconds. Most impressively, it calculated a route from London to the centre of Edinburgh in less than 10 seconds. The quick calculation is even more noticeable when you leave the suggested route. Once the GO 1000 is sure you’ve veered off course, and it’s not just a GPS glitch, a new route is found very speedily indeed.
The rapid recalculation will be particularly handy when allied with TomTom’s HD Traffic system. The GO 1000 will be able to find alternative routes quickly as new traffic information is delivered. However, our test unit unfortunately was an early sample and didn’t have LIVE services enabled, so we haven’t been able to put this particular benefit to the test.
But the LIVE services haven’t changed significantly since their inception. They still consist of HD Traffic, Google Local Search, weather forecasts, fuel prices, and dynamically updated safety camera locations. The only difference is that the GO 1000 comes with a year of LIVE services out of the box, after which it’s £47.50 per annum, which is less than half that of previous generations. This pricing structure has also recently rolled out across TomTom’s existing LIVE range.