When TomTom launched its LIVE services, this was a premium feature only available in its top-of-the-range GO models. But in the last year or so they have filtered down to the XL LIVE and recent Via 120 LIVE. In fact, if you take a look at TomTom’s current range, it’s now absolutely enormous, with more than half LIVE-enabled. The GO LIVE 825 is the first step towards TomTom rationalising its selection to connected GO LIVE models and non-connected Starts, the new members of which we will be looking at in a future week, although for now the range is still larger than the largest thing in largetown.
The 1000 and 1005 remain the flagship members of the GO LIVE range. So the GO LIVE 825 is the new midrange offering, and uses the same integrated mount as the Via range, which means you need to attach it to your screen every time you use it. However, this also folds quite flush with the unit, so it still fits in a pocket. Lots of people remove their sat-nav mount from their car after every usage anyway, in case its presence encourages a break in. So this isn’t necessarily as big a drawback as it at first seems. The car power adapter is also TomTom’s latest two-part affair, with a USB cable connecting to a cigarette lighter plug. So the same cable will be used for hooking up to PC as well as in-vehicle power.
Of course, the jewel in the 825’s crown is its LIVE system. Surprisingly, this hasn’t changed considerably since its arrival in the GO 740 LIVE and GO 540 LIVE. The headline act remains HD Traffic, which is still unquestionably the best jam-detection system on the market. This augments traditional RDS-TMC information with data gleaned from Vodafone mobile phone triangulation and TomTom LIVE devices, providing a much more accurate and detailed picture of real-time traffic flow. It’s not an infallible system, but it’s currently the most effective way to avoid being stuck in gridlock.