TomTom car kit OR Magellan Premium car kit???

Discussion in 'iPhone Accessories' started by Mad Mac Maniac, Mar 16, 2010.

  1. Mad Mac Maniac macrumors 601

    Mad Mac Maniac

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    #1
    I am trying to decide which to buy (if either) of these. I currently own the TomTom app.

    The car kits seem to be pretty similar on specs... TomTom is $10 cheaper... But I don't know if there is really any functional difference between the two. On appearance I like the look of TomTom slightly better (especially coupled with my TomTom app... slightly OCD, but understandably so)

    But I have a few hesitations about buying either of these car kits, currently.

    Hesitations:

    1) These car kits are overkill
    I could easily buy a much cheaper alternative with less features. Is the added GPS chip really necessary? I would have told you no about a month ago, but lately my TomTom app has been jumping off the highway all over the place and it can't seem to lock correctly a lot of the time. But this is while inside the car, not out on the dash in direct sight of the sky, so it may do better with any old mount.

    2) Could a newer (cheaper or better) car kit be on the way
    The GPS app prices are constantly driven down due to the heavy competive market... I'm hoping the competition starts to drive these car kits in a positive direction with price drops or improvements.

    3) Compatible with June 2010 iPhone?
    I will be updating my iPhone 3G this summer. I'm mostly worried about the size/form factor of the new iphone (specifically with the already tight squeeze TomTom car kit). I wouldn't be surprised if the hardware changed just enough to make it unusable with the car kit. Or alternatively the iphone will have an enhanced GPS chip, making the added GPS chip unnecessary


    So please chime in if any of you have had experience with this car kits, positive or negative.

    Side question: Every thing I read on the TomTom car kit says that route guidance is spoken thru the TomTom speaker and the ipod through the aux out car speakers. I assume music will play on the TomTom speakers if the aux out isn't used??? (I don't have the input)
     
  2. Jelsoft Sux macrumors member

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    #2
    I bought my Magellan car kit a few days ago from my local Apple Store. Although I think the TomTom unit looks better, I got the Magellan one because I don't have to remove my case before inserting it. It was also unclear from the TomTom's packaging if it included the dash-mount disc. Whereas the Magellan packaging stated it could be dash-mounted.

    I had previously been using a standard $10 cradle and often saw a lag time when trying to acquire a GPS signal and frequent recalculations. I see none of that when using the Magellan unit. The speaker sounds a little distorted, even at low volumes. But that could also be the navigation app I'm using, G-Map.

    I have two concerns with the Magellan unit. First, you can't separate the audio-out signal. Meaning, if you want to use the line-out to your car stereo you'll hear the music through both your stereo and the Magellan speaker. Sure you can turn down the volume, but then you won't hear an incoming call. The second concern is it really seems to heat up my phone. I'm concerned about the high temperatures having adverse effects on my phones battery.

    But overall, it's better than my previous cradle even though it's far from perfect.
     
  3. cavemonkey50 macrumors 6502

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    #3
    When connected to your car speakers through the aux output, everything will play over the aux except phone calls, which will go over the built-in speaker. So, the route guidance will go over the aux as well. When not connected via aux, everything will play in the built-in speaker.
     
  4. Mad Mac Maniac thread starter macrumors 601

    Mad Mac Maniac

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    #4
    Thanks for the info :)

    thanks. that's what I figured. Is the built in speaker good enough for music?
     
  5. Mad Mac Maniac thread starter macrumors 601

    Mad Mac Maniac

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    #5
    Are there any other car kits on the same level as these?? Also which one feels more sturdy and durable?
     
  6. tstreete macrumors newbie

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    #6
    Because the iphone's internal gps is less sensitive, it is hard to predict when it will work well for navigation and when it won't. Lots of variables effect it. But in my car, mounted on the dash, the iphone alone would flip out now and then, and the TomTom car kit just made the reception solid and reliable, which is what I want in a gps. Some people don't need it, others do.
    We can hope, but I notice there aren't as many websites advertising either car kit as there were a few months ago. I got my TomTom car kit in November for $90 shipped from Bottom Line Telecom, and they aren't selling it at all right now. So I personally would not bank on these getting cheaper. Better maybe, but probably not a whole lot cheaper.
    Good questions. FWIW, the TomTom car kit is compatible with all three existing iphones, but not with the iTouch. The Magellan is more flexible, and works with the iTouch as well. So a new iphone is likely to fit, but who knows if it will have a better internal gps.
     
  7. eron macrumors 6502

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    #7
    Mic: Tomtom's calls are clearer. Magnellan's is 'very far'.
     
  8. Mad Mac Maniac thread starter macrumors 601

    Mad Mac Maniac

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    #8
    Update:

    So I decided to make the plunge. I bought the TomTom car kit. I just decided that my current need for it was enough to rationalize buying one of these in spite of my hesitations. I went with TomTom because I don't use a case and I like it being one size that is unadjustable, it is slightly cheaper, I like the way it looks, I've heard a lot of good things about it, and I use the TomTom app so I liked keeping the same brand throughout.

    Obviously I can't compare it with Magellan, but I will give my results with TomTom.

    I initially took it on a 10 hour car trip. I had it plugged in and running for over half the time. I saw no charge drain on my iphone. The GPS did flip out a few times on me during the trip. Mostly when I initially started up the app, but there was once or twice that it just started jumping around randomly while I was driving. Also once it was unable to obtain any GPS lock at all until I exited the app and re-entered.

    My car doesn't have an Aux in so I used the built in speaker exclusively. The music volume is sufficient to meet my needs, even speeding 80 mph down the freeway in my semi-loud car. Although while using the bluetooth on phone calls it was completely unusable on the trip. I could only hear when I leaned in next to the car kit, and the other person had a lot of troubles hearing me as well. Since then I have used it a few times driving around the city with MUCH better success. I've even gone up to about 60 mhp and it works fine.

    I like the design a lot. Very sleek and easy to use. I particularly like the twist to suction mount. Very simple to use and sturdy.

    Also, just FYI it doesn't work at all if it's not plugged in. I would have thought the speaker could be used with the iphone power or something, but no. Maybe the aux out would work, I'm not sure.
     
  9. bwfc0907 macrumors regular

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    #9
    Will the TomTom cradle only stick to a windscreen or to the dash if I choose?
     
  10. Mad Mac Maniac thread starter macrumors 601

    Mad Mac Maniac

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    #10
    It comes with a little sticky think for the dash.
     
  11. bwfc0907 macrumors regular

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    #11
    Does that secure it, even over bumps?
     
  12. Mad Mac Maniac thread starter macrumors 601

    Mad Mac Maniac

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    #12
    I can't say. I use the windshield suction mount. That does the job and it's easy to take on and off. What's preventing you from using that? Local law?
     
  13. bwfc0907 macrumors regular

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    #13
    It seems quite a distance away to change the music without swerving all over the road.
     
  14. Mad Mac Maniac thread starter macrumors 601

    Mad Mac Maniac

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    #14
    Well it's true that it can become difficult and unsafe to adjust things while you are actually moving, it is do-able and I have done it at times. But usually it's a lot easier just to remove the iphone and adjust it in your hand. It's easy to pop in and out :)

    But technically you really shouldn't be messing with it while driving if you can avoid it, because it will always be unsafe
     
  15. rgold01 macrumors newbie

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    #15
    i like the tomtom software but i think i want to buy the magellen car kit. Has anyone done this and can you confirm it will work?
     
  16. Arran macrumors 68040

    Arran

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    #16
    Is your phone paired with the kit's Bluetooth? Mine wasn't initially and I had the same problem.
     
  17. navguy macrumors regular

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    #17
    i use TomTom's kit, works well for my purposes (don't use Aux, did not buy Magellan's due to Aux out issue and no fix ever released) - i use the sticky disk on dash, holds well ... one suggestion is to wrap the power cord back over the mount so that the power cord doesn't tug down on the end of the unit (can turn mount a bit) ... take the weight off, i've had no problems w/ mount stability and overall use.
     
  18. Mad Mac Maniac thread starter macrumors 601

    Mad Mac Maniac

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    #18
    Yes it is. But what I've found is that (in my car at least) hands free is really only usable at slower speeds. On the highway it can be hit or miss depending on signal strength and noise of the car. Some highways are smoother than others
     
  19. Natesac macrumors 6502a

    Natesac

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    #19
    I love my Tomtom kit. I use it with the Tomtom app although I would like to try Navigon.

    I have never used a standalone GPS unit so this was my first foray into Turn by turn.

    All I have to say is I love it. The first time I used it to get somewhere I had never been was awesome. It greatly increases the accuracy and speed of any app using GPS

    I use the aux and the dash disk. It sits just above my car stereo volume knob so its really easy to use. I find that I need to be at lower speeds with the windows up and the A/C off to be able to use the speakerphone. The voice control works great.

    My phone can get a little warm if I am running a turn by turn app and its a warm sunny day. I have only once had it stop charging. I think this may be more of an issue with the iPhone 3g and older. My 3GS has always been able to handle a workload while charging.

    My one gripe is that it will not accommodate an iPhone case of any shape or flavor. you gotta go nude.

    I am going to be super pissed if the new iPhone won't fit in the tomtom kit. That would slow my decision to sell my 3GS.
     
  20. Mad Mac Maniac thread starter macrumors 601

    Mad Mac Maniac

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    #20
    You and me both.... but I have the 3G so in my mind I HAVE to upgrade....
     
  21. Natesac macrumors 6502a

    Natesac

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    #21
    Well if the gizmodo pics are to be believed..... I think it will fit. It looks like it's very close to the same length.
     
  22. maria111 macrumors newbie

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  23. Scott-USA macrumors newbie

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    #23
    4th Generation iphone fitting TomTom Mount

    Viewing photos of the 4th Generation iphone prototype and also looking closely at the way my current 3GS fits into my TomTom mount, I would say that the next iphone "should" fit into the TomTom. I guess we will all just have to wait and see to know for sure.
     
  24. jmholcomb macrumors newbie

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    #24
    TomTom or Magellan car kit

    I see that the posts for above are from 2010. I just want to update. I bought a TomTom car kit because it was required per the TomTom app. This was five months ago. It now has a number of things wrong with it (no auto bluetooth connection, volume not working etc). I contacted TomTom and was told they don't make it any more nor do they have parts. This first (of three) CUSTOMER SERVICE REPS said I would have to troubleshoot it with them. When I told them I was in the house they said to bring it in!!! Of course it no longer works when disconnected. When I told her this she still insisted I bring it in. I hung up on her.

    I called back again and was told same as above except for bringing it in house. When I asked them what they were going to do for me since I had a one year warranty. I was again told it no longer made and no parts. I said, for the first of many times, "So?". I was also told I should return it to the store- like the store would refund me after five months. He set up a case number and said I'd get email with instructions for sending receipt and was asked to call and verify their receipt when done.

    To end this thread soon I just want to say that after asking for the supervisor (please hold I don't know where he is) I was told that finance would email me in 3-5 work day with their findings. That was three work days ago.

    The car kit is still being offered on the TomTom website albeit with a price of £79.99 (?). I believe the app should be pulled. Will post update.

    ----------

    I see that the posts for above are from 2010. I just want to update. I bought a TomTom car kit because it was required per the TomTom app. This was five months ago. It now has a number of things wrong with it (no auto bluetooth connection, volume not working etc). I contacted TomTom and was told they don't make it any more nor do they have parts. This first (of three) CUSTOMER SERVICE REPS said I would have to troubleshoot it with them. When I told them I was in the house they said to bring it in!!! Of course it no longer works when disconnected. When I told her this she still insisted I bring it in. I hung up on her.

    I called back again and was told same as above except for bringing it in house. When I asked them what they were going to do for me since I had a one year warranty. I was again told it no longer made and no parts. I said, for the first of many times, "So?". I was also told I should return it to the store- like the store would refund me after five months. He set up a case number and said I'd get email with instructions for sending receipt and was asked to call and verify their receipt when done.

    To end this thread soon I just want to say that after asking for the supervisor (please hold I don't know where he is) I was told that finance would email me in 3-5 work day with their findings. That was three work days ago.

    The car kit is still being offered on the TomTom website albeit with a price of £79.99 (?). I believe the app should be pulled. Will post update.
     
  25. Natesac macrumors 6502a

    Natesac

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    #25
    The app works pretty well, the car kit is a piece of junk. The suction cup kept lettng go and the audio jack got really loose and only played through the left channel speakers.
     

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