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Better than a boring old map!


reliable (touch wood ! ), easy to use once you get the hang of it, a handy tool to have in the car


Recommendable Yes:

Detailed rating:


Ease of Use

Look & Feel

Battery life

Value for Money

Durability & RobustnessStrong

Display sizeGood

45 Ciao members have rated this review on average: very helpful See ratings
exceptional by (2%):
  1. Dentolux
very helpful by (98%):
  1. TheHairyGodmother
  2. arnoldhenryrufus
  3. larsbaby
and 46 other members

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Recently my dad decided to treat himself to a Sat Nav, and this is the one he chose to buy for himself. He bought this from Argos where is cost him just under £100. Last week I went camping with some friends and my dad drove me there, but as neither of us knew where the camping site was he gave me this Sat Nav before we set off and told me to programme it so that it would take us straight to the site.
This is a lot easier said than done. I had never used a Sat Nav before in my life so how he expected me to just know straight away how to use it, I do not know. I spent about half an hour randomly pressing buttons and hoping they were the right ones. Eventually though, I managed to figure it out and now I have used it a few times and I feel confident enough to be able to write a review about it.

Look & Feel

The Sat Nav is a square shape, it is black and it has the 'TomTom' logo at the bottom. When it is plugged in at the front of the car it looks quite good I have to say, and I think it looks rather sophisticated and I felt very cool being driven around in a car with a Sat Nav (apart from the car we were in was a dirty old Land Rover!).
Using the device feels strange at first, probably because it was new to me, but once you get the hang of it, it feels just like using a mobile phone. It is touch screen so I found that I had to keep wiping it to get rid of greasy finger marks off it, but apart from that I think it has a good look and feel to it.

Ease Of Use

When I first started using this I thought it was a nightmare. I couldn't work it out, so just kept pressing random buttons and seeing where they took me, just to help me get a feel of it and to help me understand how the device works. After a while though I did get used to it and now I can understand much more clearly which buttons you need to press to get which functions to work. I think the reason I found it hard to use in the first place is because when you first pick it up to tell it where to take you, there isn't a button that says 'press this to tell me where to take you' or anything like that. You just have to press on a random blue square at the bottom and that takes you to another screen which you then select options such as 'points of interest' or 'city', things like that and then it takes you to a screen with a keyboard on. You have to use the keyboard as touch screen which I found quite frustrating because you need to be careful not to press the wrong button, which was easily done, and also you can't type too fast or it won't pick up the buttons you have pressed. As you type suggestions come up, for example if you type in 'Ba' and you are in North Wales, you will get suggestions such as 'Bangor' and Barmouth'. You can also save routes when you have completed it, so that you can do it again some other time.
I should also mention that the points of interest it finds for you are things like hotels and campsites. But it only picks up the points of interest that are local to the area you are driving through at the time you select it.


So far this Sat Nav has took us to all the right places and it hasn't made any errors, so for that reason I would say that it is very reliable. When my dad bought this he was given a car charger for it as well, and the battery life is pretty good, so I think you could rely on this not to run out of battery when you are stuck somewhere you have never been before and have no idea how to get home. There is also a speed ometer on this Sat Nav that tells you how fast the car is going, in mph. This has so far been correct so that has also proved so far to be reliable.


This has proved itself tremendously useful and it is so much more fun than using a boring old map. You can choose whether you want the volunme on or off. This is good as sometimes the voice gets annoying and you want to turn it off. I have heard you can change the voice but we haven't worked out how you do this yet.
Basically I think that this is a really good device and I would definitely recommend it.

Thanks for reading xo
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Comments about this review »

Dentolux 06.09.2010 20:22

Careful with pressing random buttons. I wanted to go to Ipswich and ended up in Iceland instead.

arnoldhenryrufus 01.08.2010 22:54

I rely on mine so much - lyn x

liolia79 25.07.2010 13:54

Very useful review!

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Product Information Ľ

Manufacturer's product description

The TomTom Start is specifically designed for occasional drivers and drivers who haven't had a chance to experience...


Features Hands-free calling via Bluetooth, built-in speaker, TMC (Traffic Message Channel) ready, preinstalled POIs, IQ Routes technology, TomTom Map Share technology, TomTom QuickGPSfix, Advanced Lane Guidance, Plug & go, Emergency Help, parking assistance
Internal Memory 2 GB flash, 1 GB flash
Aerial Built-in


Menu Language Danish, Hungarian, Czech, Croatian, Slovenian, Slovak, Flemish, Brazilian Portuguese, English, German, French, Italian, Norwegian, Portuguese, Polish, Finnish, Swedish, Russian, Spanish, Dutch, Greek, Turkish, Latvian, Lithuanian, Estonian, Catalan, Malay, Spanish (Neutral), Afrikaans
Display Illumination Yes
Resolution 320 x 240

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This review of TomTom Start has been rated:

"exceptional" by (2%):

  1. Dentolux

The overall rating of a review is different from a simple average of all individual ratings.

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