My Navigon GPS Review

Discussion in 'iOS Apps' started by dontwalkhand, Aug 17, 2009.

  1. dontwalkhand macrumors 601

    dontwalkhand

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2007
    Location:
    Phoenix, AZ
    #1
    Here is a YouTube video to how I mount the iPhone in the car: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MOMIQ-t507w

    PROS: Speed Limit Warnings, Gently lowers iPod volume to play Navigation instructions, rather than completely stopping it, School zone warnings

    CONS: Lack of customization, unable to avoid certain roads when planning a route, etc., Uses Apple keyboard

    Anyways, on with the review. I needed a GPS application because I do On-Site computer repairs, and having a turn by turn navigation system would help me out a lot in navigating to the worksites. I purchased this application well before TomTom was out, and I really liked the GUI of Navigon on their standalone PNDs.

    When just driving, and not needing navigation, I leave the Navigon application on the "Show Map" screen for the sake of the speed limit warnings, and the speed limit virtual roadsign. This view is really helpful because sometimes you would forget what the posted speed limit really is, and I can just glance at the screen and find out what the speed limit is. Also, the voice would tell me caution when I am 5 over the speed limit (What I had set it to).

    When actually navigating, this is where I have noticed some problems, sometimes, it would place me on the adjacent road, rather than the road I am actually on. This doesn't happen a lot, but when it does, it is really annoying. Last time I was driving down the freeway, and there is a frontage road that ran right beside it. The GPS thought I was driving on the frontage road, and started telling me caution, because it thought I was over the speed limit of the frontage road, rather than the highway.

    Another problem I have with it is the fact it uses the Apple keyboard, rather than something a little more finger friendly. For something like Address numbers, a large number pad should appear, but instead the default Apple keyboard shows. This is just a minor inconvenience, and shouldn't be bad if you plan your routes before placing the phone in the car mount.

    It does read off major highways, such as "L O O P 101" and "A Z 87 North"...which is good enough for me. There are a few quirks with the application however, and does not seem to take into the account of the American audience this application is targeted, for example, it pronounces the letter "Z" as "Zed"

    Lane assistance and reality view pro has to be the coolest thing I have ever seen in a GPS however.

    I hope that TTS would be added soon, but it is no problem. I really like how the homescreen for Navigon also has a nice giant Show Map button for when I am driving without the need for navigation instructions.

    The speedometer on the GPS app is very important to me, because I feel that it is more accurate than the one built into my car. The speedometer built into my car is off by a few MPH, and shows that I am going faster than what I really am going. Navigon's built in speedometer is surprisingly really accurate. (Compared with the digital "your speed is" signs along Arizona roads)

    Now comparing it to TomTom
    I AM SO GLAD I DID NOT PURCHASE TOMTOM! I know I have made another thread about plunking down the cash for TomTom, but now that I think about it, Navigon is much better than TomTom. My best friend decided to buy TomTom today, and I messed around with it.

    From what I can see, there are no audible speed limit warnings, no school speed limit warnings. Also nothing about "major road" TTS either, unlike Navigon.

    If you already have Navigon, TomTom is not worth it, stick with Navigon. It is the most fully featured GPS for North America available on the iPhone!
     
  2. Pika macrumors 68000

    Pika

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2008
    Location:
    Japan
    #2
    Actually, I'm glad i have purchased TomTom and Navigon just because i now have the 2 largest mapping data providers (Navteq & TeleAtlas) in one device.
     
  3. inf macrumors 6502

    inf

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2006
    Location:
    Helsinki, Finland
    #3
    My thought are pretty in line with the OP.

    I have both Navigon and TomTom. Both have their pros and cons, but in total I starting to fall for the Navigon.

    TomToms POI database (atleast here in Finland) seems to be very limited. But I have to say that I haven't tested them very much. But Navigon seems to have more POIs. For me I travel a lot between different ice hockey rinks so it's nice to have them integrated and not have to manually add them as favourites. Navigon finds almost all I have searched, TomTom only finds the biggest ones.

    In UI wise, I think TomTom has an edge. The gui is nice and the amount of configure options is much better than Navigon.

    TomTom doesn't have (atleast not yet) Line Assistant, which is a nice feature. I haven't had a chance to test the overspeeding warnings, both has them right?

    At the moment it seems in total Navigon is better, but it has got one update already...we'll have to wait for the next TomTom update
     
  4. ddrueckhammer macrumors 65816

    ddrueckhammer

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2004
    Location:
    America's Wang
    #4
    Good point about different map sets. Navigon and TomTom both have their strengths. Personally, I prefer TomTom a bit more but I'm not sure I prefer it $30 more... We will see when we get all the information about updates and pricing though...
     
  5. Pika macrumors 68000

    Pika

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2008
    Location:
    Japan
    #5
    NAVTEQ is a US based company, while TeleAtlas is based in Europe. So while NAVTEQ is definately the better choice for North America, TeleAtlas is better for Europe.

    I can understand why Navigon is better for Americans and TomTom for Europeans.

    Other then that, it's all about the UI opinions and preferences. Personally i prefer the Navigon interface because it's super super easy and simple to use with it's minimalist interface. A 7 years old child could use Navigon. Just 1, 2 clicks and go.

    TomTom on the other hand is a MAZE !!! It's like navigating inside Windows XP's start menu. You click this and it show me this... i click that and it show me that... 5 to 8 clicks !!! urrrgh....
     
  6. ddrueckhammer macrumors 65816

    ddrueckhammer

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2004
    Location:
    America's Wang
    #6
    Good point, but the reason TomTom seems like a maze is because it has quite a few more options (more voices, many different map colors, many more routing options including avoidance and alternative routes, trip planning, written instructions etc.), the maps are much more legible, and the maps and POIs are more up to date. Also, TomTom looks more like a native app IMO.

    As I said before, Navigon has the advantage of being cheaper and having a few things like advanced lane assistance, "reality view" and a bit nicer UI but you are just getting more features with TomTom. It is hard to judge whether those features add up to the cost difference though. Personally, for me it is a toss up.
     
  7. Pika macrumors 68000

    Pika

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2008
    Location:
    Japan
    #7
    I agree. I think most of the TomTom features are not essential like huge language voice list... That large list of POI check list... While Navigon gives the essentials.
     
  8. inf macrumors 6502

    inf

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2006
    Location:
    Helsinki, Finland
    #8
    In my opinion this is a great feature, although there is too many languages. I wish Navigon would add an option to change the voice languege. I like to keep my phone using english but I would like to get the instructions in Finnish.
     
  9. ddrueckhammer macrumors 65816

    ddrueckhammer

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2004
    Location:
    America's Wang
    #9
    I like having more voices and map colors too. I hate the default Navigon lady. There are plenty of options I wouldn't really use though like "Road Blocks". During Navigation you tell it that there is a "Road Block" for so many meters ahead and it calculates a new route. It sounds useful, but when will I ever use this?

    I would gladly trade that feature and a couple others for TTS.
     
  10. inf macrumors 6502

    inf

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2006
    Location:
    Helsinki, Finland
    #10
    TTS is nice. Atleast Navigon has said that they will add this in a future update.
     
  11. Pika macrumors 68000

    Pika

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2008
    Location:
    Japan
    #11
    The Navigon lady DOES sounds like Kathleen Turner after smoking cigarettes. :p
     
  12. sjdigital macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2008
    Location:
    The Caucasus
    #12
    Interesting logic, but flawed I'm afraid. Navteq covers more of central and eastern Europe than TeleAtlas so is a better choice for many Europeans. I've certainly based my sat nav purchases over the last few years on devices that use Navteq maps rather than TeleAtlas for that reason.
     

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