GPS device for my car

Do I really need a GPS device for my car?

I drive a Ford EcoSport that has Ford SYNC compatibility. What this means is that I use Google Maps for navigation and the phone syncs up to my car automatically via Bluetooth. So my car tells me where to go and Google Maps does the rest. So do I really need a GPS device?

The short answer: probably not

GPS device for my car

That is the short answer. But there is a bit more thought that goes into this. TomTom sent me a TomTom GO 6200 GPS device with the idea being that I could try negotiate the insane Sandton traffic that surrounds my house daily. I had some reservations but went along with it.

This device is pretty rad.

GPS device for my car

It has a built in SIM card for real time updates but I didn’t use that. So I cannot comment. It also updates via WiFi. This is pretty rad because I remember with old navigation devices I used I’d have to plug them in to a PC to update and found the whole process rather annoying. Conveniently you can still access my WiFi in the car park next to my place so the device could update accordingly. It is also big, like 6″ screen big, which I like. Because sometimes listening to directions makes me nervous and it was easier glancing up at a device rather than down. There is also a TomTom MyDrive app which checks live traffic notifications to ensure the quickest route. It also saves your favourite destinations so you really can just get in and go.

It is compatible with IOS and Android devices and also compatible with Siri and Google Now. There is also the bonus of hands free calling and voice control. All rather rad BUT all something my car does already. Other than the 6″ screen I’ve got most of these features. Granted I don’t have live traffic notifications but I’m told that if I download Waze I’d be sorted in that department.

So truth be told?

GPS device for my car

The long answer might be no as well. The unit retails for just under R6000 at a few major stores and I’m just really not sure having a big screen to view funky maps is worth the price tag. Sorry TomTom, while it is fun to play with I just really don’t think the TomTom GO 6200 is worth the moola. I’m going to spend a couple of rand on data charges to get Waze and hope for the best.

Disclosure: I was sent a TomTom GO 6200 for review. The device goes on to another journalist now. 

1 Comment

  • Reply Shawn Marran August 17, 2017 at 12:57

    I have also been wondering if there’s any reason to get a dedicated GPS device. This clears it up for me, thanks. There’s no way I would ever pay that much money simply for something that’s only goal is directions.

    On another note:

    I swear by Waze. We always joke and say “In Waze we trust” when someone asks for directions. The one thing I’ve learned from using it is, never doubt it. No matter what route it gives you, Waze knows best.

    Often times I’ve driven with skeptics that do not listen to its directions and then end up having to take a much longer and tedious route. They then put the blame on Waze for it, whereas if they followed the directions perfectly, they would’ve made it to their destination perfectly on time.

    With the mini rant out of the way. The live traffic updates and community reports for crashes or traffic jams, have saved me hours of travel time. As well as it’s drive planning function, that allows you to see when the best time would be to leave so you can avoid the traffic.

    It’s also fun to use as there’s a scoreboard and you can rank up and get levels and stuff. You won’t regret using it!.

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