After finally being dragged into the age of the iPhone and by browsing through the navigation and travel Apps, I have started to realise just how many gadgets are on the market to assist the car owner and driver. I thought it would be a good idea if we made a list of them and give our personal opinion on: value, quality, the true benefits and any warnings. In a way this will be an independent review carried out by Kent Car Club members.
As I mentioned, the iPhone, let me start off with it, not only praising it but criticising it. Two of my cars are fitted with Bluetooth mobile phone hands-free kits. 99% of other phone manufactures use the same Bluetooth frequency, but the iPhone does not. It makes sense having a standard frequency so that you can go from car to car and have instant hands-free availability. IPhone in their wisdom change the frequency to stop you using the Bluetooth to exchange media that has not been purchased through iTunes from other phones. They have now brought about several hands-free kits of their own, but this does not solve the problem. It just means that you have to run two hands-free kits in your car if it is shared with another driver who does not have an iPhone and suffer the extra expenditure.
A positive side of the iPhone is the amount of reasonably priced downloads that can assist you as a car owner or driving. This brings me on to my first club review of the new iPhone Tomtom download.
At the moment the Tomtom download including all of Western Europe maps is priced at Â£59-95. It is simple to use and has all the features that you would expect from a stand-alone unit. You certainly would not be able to purchase a new stand-alone unit including all the updates at this price. You do need a high-speed Internet connection to download it and you must uninstall any old versions of tom-tom before trying to install the new version.
Tomtom IPhone version
Value: Good, and online saving of 20% on the Western European version until January 2010.
Quality: Good, it does what it says it is going to do.
True benefits: Good and easy to use.
Warning: You must uninstall any old versions of Tomtom to stop it corrupting the new version.