Better GPS - TomTom vs. Navigon?

Discussion in 'iOS Apps' started by iphonesrq, Nov 18, 2009.

  1. iphonesrq macrumors 6502

    Aug 31, 2007
    Hello I'm looking to purchase one of these, so tell me guys:

    Which is better TomTom or Navigon?

    thank you!
  2. sidewinder macrumors 68020


    Dec 10, 2008
    Northern California
  3. Pravda macrumors 6502a


    Sep 30, 2008
    +1 for Navigon.
    Been using it for a few months, no issues whats so ever.
  4. dagomike macrumors 65816

    Jun 22, 2007
    It's been very fluid. What's best today may not be in a couple months. There are also a lot of price points for value with other apps. Depends what you want.

    If you had $110 burning a hole in your pocket today, I'd pick up Navigon w/ traffic.
  5. str1f3 macrumors 68000

    Aug 24, 2008
    I'd wait for the TomTom update and watch the YouTube video reviews and sites like Macworld. Unfortunately I think much of the advice you'll get on this forum would be biased unless they paid $200 for both GPS apps.

    I will say from reading the reviews for both apps so far is that the TomTom can go a little wild with where you places you sometimes if the signal gets weak and the Navigon doesn't seem to do that. That may be fixed in TomTom's 1.2 update though.
  6. m3coolpix macrumors 6502a


    Dec 24, 2007
    Very true on all points. I think I'd still have to make the decision towards Navigon if choosing today (but I bought way back in early July).

    Navigon has been pretty active with updates. Only missed the traffic update target release by ~3 weeks (which also includes the app review process). That's 4 updates since late June.....the others....not so fast.... And, Navigon's ratings have always been pretty high (and seem to stay there)....the others....not so much.

    Other price points are mostly assuming you don't need access to the maps over an active data/internet connection. If you don't need the maps on the iPhone, then the lower price points are really attractive.

    I would wait (if I could, and didn't need it soon), to see what comes about as sales over the next month and a half (and be ready to buy). If not, there's becoming a lot of competition in this space, so prices may head south over time.....especially as all the apps start to really mature in early 2010.

    My $0.01.
  7. sfditty macrumors regular

    Nov 21, 2008
    I have both and use both, though I've used Navigon more than TomTom. I bought Navigon soon after it was released, but found it lacking enough to buy TomTom the day it was released- which I found it also to be lacking. Right now, both are pretty strong, and I'd hesitate to recommend one over the other. But I can offer my thoughts on the two.

    Navigon wins the popularity contest. They are clearly out to win the iPhone GPS turn-by-turn market in the US. They don't even sell GPS units in the US, and their US subsidiary has put all it's chips on the iPhone app for it's survival. I believe this is why, in general, they arrive sooner to market than TomTom with "flashy" features that users are most vocal about- text to speech and live traffic, but no route list view, and no straightforward way to avoid certain roads (TomTom had these from day one). TomTom is slowly but surely following suit in matching Navigon feature-wise, but they may never overtake Navigon in sales. But I wouldn't be surprised if they end up offering a better product over the long haul. Take IQ Routes, for example- TomTom just ported it from their standalone GPS software. Navigon has nothing like this in the US and would have to bear the full cost of developing it from scratch. Meanwhile, it seems to me that right now, Navigon's rerouting based on live traffic is useless- or worse, to be intentionally avoided (it cost me about 15 minutes yesterday due to poor traffic rerouting). I'm not saying TomTom will probably eventually overcome Navigon in the long run based on functionality, but it's possible.

    One significant difference between the two that will likely remain over time is the user interface. Navigon is slicker and looks prettier, by far. It's enjoyable to use and to look at. TomTom doesn't look like much, but is much more functional and utilitarian. Navigon wins hands down when you are using it on your hand. Mounted on a windshield, TomTom is easier to follow and read- even street names are easy to read when you're driving (not so with Navigon).

    Which is best, or which should you buy? I don't know. Both are strong, and both will get better and better- and probably closer and closer to each other in terms of features- over time. Navigon is the little engine that could (at least in the US market), and they are intent on being the dominant player in the iPhone market. TomTom is the slower, more plain, but more functional "big company" alternative with lots of leverage in the business and a more professional approach (can you say "feature documentation", Navigon? Didn't think so.). [Can you say "we really are trying for the win the race" TomTom? Didn't think so.]. But really, I don't think either will ever be a major disappointment compared to the other moving forward.
  8. fpnc macrumors 68000

    Oct 30, 2002
    San Diego, CA
    Well, as for other price points one shouldn't overlook CoPilot Live at $35. CoPilot has near feature parity with both TomTom and Navigon and has gotten frequent updates both for its maps and the application in general. It has built-in map data (does not require live network connections), text-to-speech directions, full iPod integration, points of interest, full address book integration, route preview, route lists, live weather, walking mode, and very nice map graphics (IMO).

    Frankly, the media is trying to make it a race between just TomTom and Navigon, but CoPilot is actually one of the bigger and better players in the smartphone GPS navigation market. They don't make hardware (unlike TomTom and Navigon) so they have no reason to feel threatened by cannibalization of their hardware sales (that's one reason why CoPilot is probably cheaper, TomTom isn't going to sell at a price that would undercut their own hardware).

    If I were to suggest a GPS solution at this time I'd get CoPilot at $35 and then MotionX GPS Drive at only $2.99 (for the first month) as a form of backup because no single GPS app is going to be perfect under all situations.
  9. dagomike macrumors 65816

    Jun 22, 2007
    I've reviewed a bunch of them.

    I long favored G-Map for its value and interface, but something has gone wrong with the latest versions. I'm going to hang back on that for a bit and see if they work things out.

    NAVIGON is nice and probably the best out right now. I have some significant issues with it however. I don't like that the map isn't interactive, particularly now with the traffic icons. I also don't like I can't get a route itinerary. I also don't like the short notice it tends to give me on surface streets. Way too often it decides to share with me what direction to turn when I'm in the wrong lane with heavy traffic. U-turns get old. I seem to find myself most frustrated using NAVIGON when I'm in unfamiliar locations. The new traffic though is looking nice.

    I like TomTom, but it needs more features. Everyone hates on TomTom, but I think they have a quality product and are just late to the party. I think they'll get there. It's been a bit since I used it, so I'll get re-familiarized with the 1.2 update. I recall I liked the navigation and in-route options. I generally liked the the interface. Sound quality was good with excellent voices.

    Co-Pilot is nice. The TTS needs work. The menus are a mess. Lots of features and some nice customization in there. The monthly map updates are warm-fuzzy cool. Probably my pick now on the cheaper ones.

    XMotion GPS Drive is nice and cheap for basic graphic guidance. Not worth it though if you want voice guidance via subscription. I'm not a fan of OTA maps.

    AT&T's app OK except for the large monthly fee and OTA maps. I remember the voice being soft and not that clear, but good nav.

    I'm going to look at NDrive and Magellan in the coming weeks. Just did Navigon 1.3 and will do TomTom 1.2 next. I'm also looking at the TomTom car kit. It's nice except for the iPhone case issue. Interested in the Magellan for that reason.

    All that fun stuff and more is at the link in my sig.
  10. m3coolpix macrumors 6502a


    Dec 24, 2007
    One other data point about Navigon getting pounded by the lack of documentation on the new traffic options....

    If you looked at their iPhone online documentation (before the traffic update came out), it was mostly written/posted on their website approximately two weeks after the software was originally released (this coming from memory from looking a few days ago).

    I'm wondering the same about their documentation for the traffic update....but can't check right now....the FAQ area is giving me 404s. Maybe they are updating it....

    I know Tom Tom had a nice PDF, what about the others?
  11. stockscalper macrumors 6502a


    Aug 1, 2003
    Area 51
    CoPilot's maps seem to be 5 to 10 years old. They are horribly outdated in my area. Also its routing is horrible regardless of how you tweak your routing profile.
  12. fpnc macrumors 68000

    Oct 30, 2002
    San Diego, CA
    Some areas are out of date or incomplete, but I submitted two corrections through CoPilot's MapSure program and both were fixed in the next monthly map update (one change added a fairly new housing complex that had dozens of homes and probably five or six side streets, so it wasn't a minor change, they remapped a pretty big area and all I had to tell them was that street x now connected to street y in a new housing complex). Further, in my experience the CoPilot routing works pretty well and it re-routes in a flash (literally within a second or two).

    Map data is a problem for all of the GPS apps. It's also hard to compare between products because the quality will vary between areas (one may be better in some areas, but worse in others). As a case in point, it you look at the Engadget demo of the Google Android GPS the first trip they tried got them into an endless loop because Google had a one way street mapped in the wrong direction (so the Google app had them going around and around the same block).

    That said, I've seen complaints about the maps in just about every GPS solution, but it seems that CoPilot may have more problems than either Navigon or TomTom.
  13. Mr. Gates macrumors 68020

    Mr. Gates

    Jun 17, 2009
    --Redmond --------- ----------------Washington---
    JEEEZZZ you have a lot of GPS apps !! That's a lot of cash,....or is it? Hmm?

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