back to article TomTom UK and Ireland

Apple added a true GPS pick-up to the iPhone more than a year ago, but it's taken that long for TomTom to release an application to make use of it. Even now, it's not a complete offering. The software is there, but the car kit - once the sort of add-on bundled with applications, but now sold separately - isn't available and its …


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  1. Matt Bryant Silver badge


    First off, let me admit I am a TomTom user on other devices, and I really like their software and would recommend it to those with a phone without an option. But, the iBone does come with a pretty decent mapping tool, GoogleMaps, which I have used a few times with other people's iBones, so I am puzzled as to why people would feel the need to go out and download this rather limited version of the TomTom experience. Surely the vanilla GoogleMaps app gives just as good a service, and even has some bonuses in location pics and satellite imagery? Or is it that TomTom and Apple are banking on the average iBoner having more maony than sense?

  2. sleepy

    How about a comparative review?

    Putting TomTom against Navigon & any others.

    Having tried with Navigon, I have to say Google maps with route marked, positition tracking and satellite photos does a very good job for free if you have cellular data service.

  3. Si 1

    I'd wait for v2 as well

    I bought this when it came out, it's perfunctory but missing a fair few expected features. I'm about to go on holiday in Devon for 2 weeks and I've dumped my Navman from the car. While it's a better satnav overall, it's a minor pain to have to put it out of sight or take it with me every time I park the car. At least with the iPhone it's something I can slip into a pocket when I reach my destination.

    The TomTom software is OK, it doesn't know a few recent roads in my area so I would expect TomTom to update the maps for free given that they're not current. Overall it feels a bit rushed (presumably to meet the summer deadline they announced at the 3GS launch) but it does the job. Graphically it's a bit plain too, some satellite imagery would be nice.

    The other problem is the lack of a cradle, so far balancing on the dash has worked but it would be nice to have the cradle with built-in charging and FM transmitter they've announced.

  4. ElNumbre


    I didn't see anywhere in the review that says what the behaviour is when you receive a phone call on the iPhone? Does the app pause, stop or do something else?

  5. David Barrett

    Yeah but

    I was really excited about this, it's one of the reasons that I choose the I phone over my other options, but £60 really? And they provide NO hardware in that price? I can get a tom tom one dedicated uniti for that price. I'm sure they just priced themselves out of the market.

  6. Anonymous Coward


    Q: Where's the hardware kit?

    A?: On the slow boat from China?

  7. Richard Bedford


    Get the CoPilot offering instead - does the same job and only costs £26 form the App Store!

  8. Dave Coleshill

    It works well on the 3GS, but...

    how well does it work on the basic 3G, without the AGPS and compass?

  9. alex cee

    What happends when.....

    ......somebody calls you during use of the tomtom navigation software?

    I would be interested to see how the Iphone handles this....

  10. Colin 21

    Copilot is better (and cheaper)

    Hmm apart from a few clunky menu options Copilot would seem to be the better option. It's much cheaper (£25.99 by memory), has lane assist for motorways, speed camera locations (with free updates for about 2 years), fuel prices and more.

    Routing is fast and as accurate as the TomTom.

  11. Red Bren

    I already have a TomTom Rider

    What I want is the ability to pair it with my iPhone to download traffic updates. TomTom support suggest I buy their iPhone app, but can't explain how I'm supposed to use it while riding a motorbike.

  12. Vincent Ballard

    For everyone?

    Or do you have to be an English bas to use it?

  13. Anonymous Coward


    It looks a rush job to me.

    The shame was that Tom Tom demo vids showed iPhone sitting in its own dock with its additional position locators.

    Software on its own is, well, sort of interesting.

    The lack of hardware, means to manage the software and means to update information with a device that is already telecoms savvy looks far too much like an excellent opportunity missed.

  14. Fluffykins

    Does this use TeleAtlas maps?

    You know, the ones that say Jersey, Guernsey and the Isle of Man don't exist

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    Stick with dedicated Sat Nav

    These crap phone "apps" never live up to the job and kill phone batteries in no time (like the iPhone needs a reason for the battery to die). Not worth the money or the cost of the updated maps you will need to keep splashing out on.

  16. Jolyon Ralph
    Thumb Down

    Way too expensive!

    What's the point when for £20 more you can get a stand-alone Garmin Nuvi 250 with full europe maps. I'm pretty sure the car kit from Tom Tom isn't going to be less than £20.

    For half the price I'd consider it. For £60 it smells of rip-off.


  17. Anonymous Coward

    Significant platform limitation

    Will the mount provide TMC information ?

    I've read elsewhere that Apple's choice to disallow mulitasking means that, for example, if you're coming up to a complex junction and a friend calls you, the navigation will cease while the call is being taken and re-commences when the call ends. If you're on a Motorway and miss your junction because of a call you could waste quite a bit of fuel.

    I'm sure the Andriod version will be much better in this regard...

  18. Rob Griggs-Taylor

    Try an alternative...

    I've used GPS systems for a few years now (started with ViaMichelin on a Palm handheld) but lately I've only used TomTom kit as it's so intuitive to use and reliable.

    However, I was disappointed at the high cost of adding it to the iPhone so I bought CoPilot instead (it's about £26.99 from memory) and it's a very decent app with some nice features.

    We still have our standalone TomTom for foreign journeys so the iPhone one is more for occasional use but I'm happy using either.

  19. Fuzz

    price a bit steep?

    Considering co-pilot is available for £25.99 for UK maps and £59.99 for the whole of Europe. I guess Tom Tom are hoping that they can sell this on the basis of their brand.

  20. Benny
    Thumb Up


    is a much better buy, IMHO.

    Just did a 3 hour journey using it, spot on for every juction and speed camera - and still have a fair bit of battery left. (still in the white)

    It might just be me, but I think the map/screens look a bit nicer than TomTom as well (apart from the fact they don't use the standard iPhone keyboard, which can get annoying)

  21. Anonymous Coward


    Lots of mentions of co-pilot, from memory its £26, do I detect astroturf at play?

  22. Gordon 10 Silver badge


    Having taken the plunge and bought co-pilot and being very pleased with it I would struggle to see what the extra £35 for Tom-Tom would get you. Personally I would wait until they drop the price. There is no way this can be worth twice the price of co-pilot.

  23. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Battery drain?

    Just out of curiosity how hard does the Tom Tom app hit the battery life of the phone? I too have used the googlemaps app on my iPhone to navigate as a passenger and while it saved our bacon when our satnav died it chewed up the battery pretty rapidly. (after 2/3 hours I was nervously trying to conserve my battery)

    If the Tom Tom app goes through the battery in similar fashion it defeates the object of having a mobile phone if you can't make/recieve calls when you get to your desination.

  24. Michael C

    When they do this...

    ...I might buy it.

    1) place/receive calls while in the app (or auto return to the app once a call is placed/received)

    2) voice comand for data input

    3) speak street names and other references, not just "turn ahead"

    4) REAL TIME traffic (it has the connection, even advertises IQ technology, but it's NOT a real time traffic system...

    5) release the hardware kit

    6) Answer straight forward how map updates will be handled/how much will they cost.

    7) iPod controls in-app

    8) Continue to speak aloud directions when engaged in a call (though speaker or bluetooth as appropriate, and configurable).

    I know Apple has some magic in the works for 3.2/4.0 that will enable a more seamless multitasking experience (the iPhone DOES multitask, but is simply limited to 1 FOREGROUND app at a time and only basic services running in the background). until then, I'd still at least expect the app, for $99 US, to perform the same functions as a cellular-enables TomTom device...

  25. Ian Watkinson 1

    Name only selling this.

    As having bought Navigon, and had a play with Tomtom and Co-pilot on friends phones.

    both Navigon and Co-pilot seem both better and cheaper.

    Would like to see a comparision review.

    From our (3 mates with iphones on a long trip swapping) the fact that tomtom crashed and lagged put it easily in 3rd. Navigon and co-pilot seem much more evenly matched.

  26. Rob Griggs-Taylor

    Ref: hmmmm

    I'm not astroturfing with my recommend of Co-Pilot Live - it does almost exactly the same job as TomTom on the iPhone but it's less than half the cost. What's not to like about that?

    Also, in regards to battery life I'd be amazed if people who are going to use an iPhone as a satnav don't already possess an in-car charger...

  27. Patrick 14


    I have the co pilot satnav and it was not much use until the update.

    It still has problems with roads that been there since Jesus was a boy but. it does work well.

    One other thing I have found, if you are coming up to say a right turn then a left say when crossing a dual carriage way it will only tell you one of the turns even when you really need the first one and not the last.

    One other thing most pound shops do ipod to usb power cables for £1 and the 12 volt to 5 volt usb for £1.00 and you can get a large holder in tesco from £6.97 most days that will hold the iphone. so there is no need for people to moan about not been able to get a holder/charger for the iphone. and mine is still full working. and if the cable is not long enough you just have to use a usb extension cable lol....

  28. Chris - LG

    kit price?

    Thanks for that. Do you have any clue what the software & kit price point will be?

  29. TeeCee Gold badge

    Re: Battery drain?

    I don't think that should be an issue. If you were expecting to use your iPhone as a SatNav system for the car in anger, you'd invest in a fag lighter to iPhone power adaptor and keep it in the glovebox.

    You know, just like the one that comes with your dedicated SatNav device, 'cos they don't have the battery grunt for a long journey off external power either.

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