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This is a great sat nav if you're on a budget. It is part of the TomTom x20 series. The current series is the x50 so it is 3 generations old, however it is still very very good.
TomTom allows you to update it online getting the latest speed cam locations and latest softwate although you have to pay to update maps :(
The great thing I found about this device is that it can link to an FM radio or bluetooth audio device. At first I had it playing music and directions through the car radio. However when I discovered the extensive bluetooth functionality I used that as sound quality is much improved.
The TomTom also allows you to connect it to your phone for use as a handsfree kit. This is great stand-alone or linked to your car speakers
Where this device differs to the normal 720 is that it has a traffic receiver which is supposed to receive updates on traffic. While this function might work great in America, the amount of roads which have traffic updates is small in the UK; even in London. Therefore, this feature is pretty much useless.
The mount for this device is very sturdy and the screen is of a very good size, I really cant fault it.
I'm an awful driver when it comes to navigation! I get lost the minute I drive out of my driveway so having a satnav in the car was a like a blessing. I have quite bad nerves so it also helps knowing that, I can always find my way back to home.
Hmm where to start...
Appearance: It looks nice and feels nice! It is small and light so will fit easily into a bag or pocket and its not big and clumpy like the Go 510s which are huge. The screen is a fantastic size.
One of the things I love about this model is the extra features, the novel features such as adding photos and music, it helps when your on long journeys and have to make a few stops, you have something to do! I love being able to add your own Points of Interest on there too and customise the symbol representing you, I have a replica of my car.
In terms of reliability, yes as with any map, sat nav there are moments when it will go wrong, I once found myself one week driving fine, the same route the following week was a one way street and I had 2 lanes iof traffic heading towards me, as long as you bear in mind that the sat nav is not infallable it should be fine. I was fairly new to the motorway when I got this so it was brilliant having it depict, state and show on the screen which lanes to take and when.
The T satands for the traffic antenna that you get with it, and once you finally manage to get a signal after faffing around with the antenna it for the majority of the time is pretty good and you can save time.
Features such as the speed camera warnings are again helpful, but again not always 100% accurate!
The weather and live services are optional and you do have to pay to use them.
The main downside to the TomTom sat navs is the fact that you have to pay to upgrade and update your maps and they work out really expensive. But apart from that, I couldnt live without mine
SatNav devices remind me a little of mobile phones in the early nineties. They are a little bit pricey, a little bit niche and until recently the preserve of gadget freaks and those who drive for a living.
These days they are a lot more prolific and I can foresee a time when they will be just as ubiquitous as mobile phones and everyone with a car will have one, and no doubt more than one if they have more than one car in the house.
This is my second SatNav device and I can't imagine ever not having one now. They keep getting better and I rarely consult the A - Z now except to get the broadest idea of where I'm going and how to get there. I've become accustomed to using it even for relatively short journeys to places I've been many times and have regularly been taken on routes I hadn't been aware of in the past, and usually these routes are quicker and easier. It's amazing how set in your ways you can get and it takes some courage to put yourself in the hands of these little machines, but once I did I haven't looked back and can't recall a time when I've been poorly, let alone incorrectly, directed.
There are a number of choices for SatNav devices; inbuilt systems, usually factory fitted on new cars but presumably also available as an after market option. They are also available as add-ons for hand held computers or as dedicated self contained units like this one.
In built systems are usually only supplied as standard on high end or prestige models. Otherwise they are an expensive option, often in excess of a thousand pounds which is a lot especially on sub-£20k cars. I'm not convinced about in built systems, Okay they are tidy, with no trailing wires or recharging problems, but given the pace of change in this market I think they will too quickly be out of date and many of those I've seen recently are already off the pace with this year's dedicated units.
The next option is the add-on for a hand held computer, or PDA. This is a good option if you have or need a well specced PDA as the SatNav package will probably only cost £100 or so extra. This gives you a pretty good device but there are downsides, you'd need a separate GPS receiver (which should be supplied) and this means another bit of kit floating around the car and more trailing wires. My first SatNav was like this and without anything to compare it to I was very happy with it for a couple of years. That is until I got this dedicated unit which pretty much beats the PDA one in every department.
The third option is to go for the dedicated unit. These will have the GPS receiver built in, usually have a bigger screen and may also have better battery life meaning less time plugged into the cigarette lighter meaning fewer cables hanging off the dashboard. These come in a variety of options ranging between £100 - £400 depending on size and functionality.
TomTom 720T ~
Costing £260 from Amazon, before Christmas 07, this unit comes well recommended in the review magazines and has a lot going for it. It has a large, bright screen set in an attractive metal and plastic case. It uses clear, well presented maps and has a large choice of voices with which to issue directions. This model will also receive traffic updates and offers you the option of incorporating these into your route selection.
In the box ~
The TomTom comes in one of those tricky Chinese puzzle type boxes. Very discreet and pretty with lots of smaller boxes inside it is a joy to unpack but an absolute bugger when you want to put everything back in. Still, tucked away in its many compartments you will find the unit itself, car charger, desk stand for connecting to the PC, windscreen mount and the usual CD and documentation. This model also comes with the RDS TMC Traffic Receiver.
Look and feel ~
The 720T is well designed, slim and lightweight it packs in a large 4.3 inch screen using the 16:9 widescreen format. As it's touch screen operated there are no other buttons or switches beyond the on/off tab on the case. The screen runs at a resolution of 480x272 and is supported by a 400MHz CPU and 64MB of RAM. It comes with 2GB of onboard memory, which is mostly taken up by the supplied maps and add-ons including Bluetooth and a built in FM transmitter. There is a free SD slot if you need to add more memory. The quoted battery life is five hours which is probably optimistic but it has seen me through a couple of three hour round trips without alarm. Weighing just 220g means that it can sit on a discreet windscreen mount that is hidden behind the unit out of sight of the driver.
The screen has a coating on it to improve visibility in strong daylight and this works well. My old PDA would quickly become impossible to view in sunlight but this screen remains clear and bright at all times.
In use ~
The 720 uses the latest navCore7 software which although offering significant improvements over the previous iteration will still be familiar to owners of older TomTom devices.
Destinations can be entered in several ways; by post code, address or selected from the large list of named places in the units memory. This is all achieved through the easily navigated touch screen menus but can also be entered via voice commands.
The software allows a lot of configuration. Icons for start and end points, your car and various other things can all be changed. There are a number of choices stored in the unit and many more available on-line. You can also select from a range of voices, again with many more on the web site, including many regional and comedy accents.
The driving map view is clear and easy to read, showing the road for a few hundred yards ahead in 3D. There is a lot of additional information on the screen, not intrusive but quickly readable all the same. The standard view includes the road you are on and the next one you need. The next junction is shown with an icon (a roundabout for example) and the distance to it. You also get distance remaining, current time and estimated time of arrival.
The maps included cover Britain and Western Europe and are updated annually, these are available as downloads but will have to be paid for each time. Your initial purchase includes one free download within 30 days of purchase in case they have been updated after the unit left the factory.
There are various little additional features, too many to list, but one that stands out is the speed limit alert. If you go too far over the speed limit an alarm will sound, unnervingly the alarm is a police siren and the first time I heard it it scared the hell out of me. It can be turned off though.
TomTom provide an additional service called Mapshare, this allows users to make changes to their maps and upload them to the website. They are then verified and made available to all other users, keeping everyone current.
For someone who hates asking for directions I love SatNav devices and the TomTom 720 far exceeded my expectations. I was worried I wouldn't see much improvement over the old PDA but the fact is it's better in every way. Screen and voice instructions are clearer and timelier, the screen is visible in all conditions and it is yet to be stumped for an address. I can't actually find a fault with it and although I'm sure it will be all out of date in a couple years for now it's perfect.
TomTom is a trustworthy name when it comes to GPS units. I recently bought this and loved it. The TomTom GO 720T is an updated version of the GO 510 which was an amazing GPS unit itself.
The TomTom GO 720T has a comfortable 4.3 inch widescreen and this unit is one of the first GPS systems to have VRT (Voice Recognition Technology). The system records your voice and gives you an answer to your vocal question of your chosen route. You can ask the TomTom to work out your route from point A to B by simply using your voice. The TomTom allows you to choose from a number of pre set voices to guide you through your journey or even your own voice.
The TomTom GO 720T has a new never seen before graphics interface. The look of the maps is sleek and the buildings are in more detail. Set in the TomTom's memory is a list of speed cameras and there positions. Along routes you can save your own addresses, point of interest and make notes along the way which is a good add on. You can also connect your TomTom to your computer which enables you to get the latest updates.
The TomTom includes help menu like all the other models before this. But this model also features a telephone BlueTooth function which lists all nearest hopitals and police stations incase of an emergency.
The design of this unit is slim with aluminium insert which makes it comfortable to touch and very discreet looking. The TomTom GO 720T has some cool functions such as an in-built FM transmitter, MP3 player and photo viewer.
Here is a list of features the TomTom GO 720T has:
- 4.3 inch widescreen 16:9 format LCD (WQVGA: 480*272 pixels)
- 2GB internal flash memory
- CPU 400 MHz, 64MB RAM
- SD card socket compatible with SD and MMC cards
- High sensitivity GPS receiver
- RDS-TMC traffic information receiver
- Integrated FM transmitter
- Optimised integrated microphones and speaker for high quality hands-free function
- Battery lithium-polymer (up to 5 hours operation)
- Map of Western Europe : Andorra, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Great Britain, Ireland, Italy, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Monaco, The Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, San Marino, Spain (+ Canary Islands), Sweden, Switzerland and Vatican City.
- Weight: 220 grams
- Dimensions: 118x83x24mm
What you get in the box is:
- Windscreen mount
- DS TMC Traffic Receiver
- Car Charger
- Desk dock
- TomTom HOME software and manual
- Quick Start Guide
Overall I liked this TomTom model design and total functionality. I especially like the excellent Voice recognition function which actually works well. Its excellent technology and piece of mind.
The new TomTom GO range features a new elegant slim design with high quality finish, making it fit perfectly in any car or shirt pocket. The large 4.3 inch touch screen has TomTom's renowned easy-to-use and intuitive user interface with 3D graphics including building footprints that ensures drivers have an even better overview of their surroundings.
The TomTom GO range also sees the introduction of TomTom's unique new map improvement technology, TomTom Map Share . This technology enables drivers to easily and instantly improve their own maps. It also lets users share improvements and benefit from all other users' improvements, daily, automatically and easily via TomTom HOME - TomTom's free software application. TomTom has the world's largest satellite navigation community with over 10 million users. TomTom Map Share users can contribute and exchange all their improvements amongst each other, making the best maps available for all of them. TomTom Map Share means TomTom drivers can always have the most up-to-date maps and inside local knowledge at their fingertips.
Other new and updated features include speech recognition, meaning users have an extra option to select the address they want to drive to. Users can choose to select the speech recognition button and then simply speak out the city and street name they would like to travel to.
Safety is a key priority in the development of all TomTom products. The new TomTom GO comes with uniquely designed safety features so drivers always have direct access to extensive safety and roadside assistance information wherever they go. The extensive 'Help Me!' menu includes information such as the way to the nearest hospital, car maintenance information and first aid instructions. Another new safety feature is the short-cut menu, which enables drivers to jump straight to their favorite, most accessed information with just one touch on the screen for even easier and safer navigation (see separate press release for more information on the extensive safety features).
The new TomTom GO range offers the latest and most up-to-date traffic information through its compatibility with RDS-TMC Traffic and TomTom's Traffic subscription, making drivers' journeys more efficient and stress-free. The enhanced traffic information user interface provides drivers with the most accurate route calculation by taking into account the current traffic information on the road and giving precise information about traffic incidents.
The new TomTom GO range comes with extensive audio options for flawless integration with the car stereo and user's phone. Drivers can play their favorite songs through the integrated MP3 player or by connecting their iPod to the TomTom GO. In addition, music and navigation instructions can be played seamlessly through the car stereo via the built-in FM Transmitter.
With the new TomTom GO, drivers can choose from a host of smart extras, making sure the destination is reached in a relaxed and enjoyable way. A number of personalization options, such as recording your own driving instructions, have been added for the first time so users can easily record their own voice, or be guided to their destination by the voices of their children, family or friends. Drivers can also view documents and pictures and exchange positions, destinations and other content with other TomTom GO users, through Bluetooth wireless technology.