For some reason I wasn’t able to turn of the voice commands, as sometimes I prefer to just use the screen. When you do approach a camera, the voice that informs you of it is no less the Tiff Needell, the presenter of Channel Five’s driving programme, Fifth Gear. Unless you’re some sort of bizarre sort of Tiff Needell groupie, this hopefully isn’t enough to make you go out and buy this Road Angel, though there’s no telling what executing a perfect power slide can do for some people. The device also alerts you when you are approaching an area where accidents are likely to occur, known as blackspots, and also when you are in a school zone. Both do make you pay more attention, but I’m not sure you need a device to make you drive carefully.
While driving to locations that I was familiar with, such as Home, Work and friends, I found that the Road Angel by default tended to pick routes that I wouldn’t have chosen myself. There is an Alternative Route feature that does work but I didn’t feel comfortable with most of the choices it made. It also had that annoying habit of insisting you turn back and go on its chosen route for far longer than other navigation tools. As a result I found that I wanted to check the route that the Road Angle has chosen, but I couldn’t find a way to do this.
After extended use I found that I did get used to the Road Angel’s foibles but I can’t say that it would be my choice of device. The interface is odd, it’s slow to respond, the routes it chooses are suspect and the manner and frequency of its alerts are grating.
Once again, all I can say is that you’d be better off with a TomTom. You can pick up a TomTom 510 for not much more than the Road Angel, and you can buy a well regarded safety camera database from www.pocketgpsworld.com for £2 a month, while with the Navigator 6000, you only get six months free subscription after which it will cost you £4 a month. With TomTom, you can also subscribe to live traffic information – something that the Road Angel doesn’t offer.
With the Navigator 6000, Road Angel wishes to trades off the reputation of its speed camera database. Certainly the warnings are comprehensive, but the device itself has numerous flaws, with questionable navigation and slow response time being just two of them.
Score in detail
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