tomtom go live 1000

The main feature of the TomTom GO LIVE 1000 is the LIVE services, which involve a 3G connection, bringing current information to your car.

You get LIVE for a year when buying the device, but once this expires, you need to pay another £47.50 to get another year's subscription, which works out to about £4 per month.

Regular drivers will find this worth the outlay, but if you're looking for a decent navigator for those occasional forays into unknown territory then it's hardly worth the expense.

The principle LIVE feature is the HD Traffic, which lets you know of delays on the road ahead, giving you information on how long you're expected to be stuck, and offers alternative routes. This is an excellent feature, and something no road warrior should be without.

More features

A second feature is the excellent Google Search tool, which turns your queries into directions in an impressively hassle-free manner.

tomtom go live 1000

A search of "Tesco" found all of the local stores, and we were able to get directions in just two button presses. "Public toilets" for the weak of bladder was also successful, as were business names and vague speculative searches such as "pizza" or "pasta."

tomtom go live 1000

However, this fantastic feature only serves to make up for the useless "points of interest" option. The limited categories were of little use, and while any LIVE user will find these irrelevant, should your subscription slip, they're not to be relied upon.

tomtom go live 1000

It's not all rosy for the TomTom, and in depth use gave us the feeling that the dated looking menu system is starting to creak under its own weight.

Complex interface

TomTom would argue that this has been overhauled for the LIVE 1000, but other than a slight touch up of the menus, it's frustrating to use. The range of options is frankly baffling at times, and even simple functions which need to be done at a glance are plagued with needless screens and queries.

When the unit came for review, text to speech was turned off, and it took a long trawl through the options to find the tick box we needed to select.

Performance of the TomTom GO LIVE 1000 is impressive, and it feels more fluid than previous models. This is noticeable from the outset, and it's faster to turn on and off.

Navigation of the menus is fast and responsive, and most noticeably, the maps are smooth and quick to update. The result is an end to those jerky refresh rates as your turn corners and pick up speed, which will be all too familiar to users of the older models.

Super mapping

The beauty of TomTom sat navs is the simplicity of its mapping, and the company hasn't messed with the winning formula. It's always clear at a glance where you're heading, and it's backed up by accurate directions, which give you prior warning of hard left or right turns, giving you that extra sense of security on unfamiliar roads.

The mapping, which was always the strength of TomTom sat navs, let the brand new GO LIVE 1000 down in a big way. On two occasions on a routine trip around Bath the sat nav tried to lead us the wrong way down a one-way street, and they weren't new streets.