If this is your first visit, be sure to
check out the FAQ by clicking the
link above. You may have to register
before you can post: click the register link above to proceed. To start viewing messages,
select the forum that you want to visit from the selection below.
My first GPS was a TomTom One 3rd edition, which I upgraded to a TomTom XL.
I used to use it almost CONSTANTLY. It's a great device for it's price. However, I found it to be a bit slow in calculating and routing sometimes. Then in some parts of the Bay Area, it's just plain incorrect despite the map updates.
Unfortunately, the TomTom seems to have a habit of calculating routes that aren't exactly the most efficient. It likes to route me down San Tomas expressway a lot, instead of Lawrence, simply because the speed limit is 5mph higher and it's a somewhat more direct road. Yet it fails to take average travel time into consideration.
San Tomas has you stopping at every other light, at least... whereas Lawrence's lights are timed much much better, at ANY given time of day.
On top of that, I find that the Telenav application on my Sprint Blackberry Pearl 8130 is faster, more accurate, and has better routing than my TomTom. So I end up using that more often than my TomTom. It does have Bluetooth, and you can use the Bluetooth connection to a smartphone to get on the fly updates of POIs (Points of Interest), or Fuel prices with the fuel prices application ($20/yr), and for better traffic updates than the RDS antenna can ever muster (another $20/yr, free if you use the $100 RDS antenna). However items like hands-free calling, are on the GO models.
The XL does not speak the street names, but the XL-S DOES.
If you do end up with a TomTom (and popular opinion has it that it's easier and somewhat more intuitive to use than a Garmin) I would suggest you pony up a bit more cash and get the base model TomTom GO series which I THINK is the GO 530. They have IQ routing for starters, meaning it constantly learns and adapts from the routes you take and travel time, as well as having a faster processor (400MHz vs. the One's 250MHz)
There are other additional things, but that's my overall experience. I like my TomTom, but I wonder if a decent Garmin is better, and I tend to get turned off due to it's slightly-more-than-occasional inaccuracy and inefficient routing, and it's inability to "smarten-up". It is NOT an easy decision, and there are some small but interesting enough features that differentiate some from others that may make you decide one over the othe. Such as the TomTom's options to avoid certain roads, or provide walking-only or limited-speed routing.