It’s TomTom time!
The next GPS device we analyzed is another TomTom model, this time the VIA 1405M one. Does it rise up to expectations? Here is what we think about this GPS analysis.
First off, we’ll start with specifications: 1.3″ x 4.7″ x 3.4″, 181g, 4.3″ widescreen color touchscreen LCD, 480 x 272 pixel resolution, 3D maps, onscreen keyboard with optional layouts, High-sensitivity receiver with QuickGPSfix satellite prediction, 4GB built-in memory, USB 2.0, Rechargeable Lithium-ion battery, Windows 2000 or later / Mac OS X 10.4 or higher, Broadband Internet Connection, User manual, Vehicle DC power cord and EasyPort vehicle suction-cup mount.
Usual features included
Features are as follows: Bluetooth hands-free calling, advanced lane guidance, spoken turn-by-turn directions (includes street names), Help Me! emergency menu, Premium maps (of the US, Canada & Mexico), TomTom Map Share On-Demand Updates, 7 Million Points of Interest, IQ Routes, 30-Day Latest Map Guarantee, TomTom Home Content Manager, free lifetime map updates, preloaded maps and points of interest, CLA socket, integrated EasyPort mount, adhesive disk, USB cable, LTM voucher and a user guide.
Super slim design
The VIA 1405M GPS, like others offered by TomTom, looks good and works very well. The design is super slim and the finish is brushed-aluminum. The touchscreen features bright colors and the interface has been improved: we found it very easy to plan routes and browse menus. On the other hand, the letters and icons look small and the zoom option didn’t help things. It made driving through roads that were not well-lit an unpleasant and somewhat dangerous situation, because we had to steal glances at the screen quite often so that we knew where we were going.
Some usability problems
The suction mechanism didn’t work that well on our windshield: it fell off most of the test time. Turning the TomTom VIA 1405M on when you start your car is another drawback and the fact that the power option is located behind the unit on the lower left corner doesn’t help matters. After we found it, we had to press and hold it quite a bit before the gadget turned on.
During our analysis, defining multiple via points was not possible. Instead, it offered us only one option for reaching our destination.
Clear voice guidance
The voice used for the turn-by-turn directions is very clear and has a beautiful pronunciation. We were able to hear it even over background noises such as voices on the radio or people on the street. The 7 million points of interest feature that comes with this model works really well and it found us some neat little restaurants.
If you want to drag maps you can do so by using the View Map option; you simply open it and start dragging maps however you please.
The USB detachable charger is a useful thing: it allowed us to charge other USB devices that we use on a daily basis.
Being able to customize the VIA 1405M is another advantage: you can turn off certain icons that annoy you, make the gadget display the hour and so much more. The Help Me! Emergency menu gave us access to emergency providers such as police stations, hospitals and the like. This product also offers map share on demand updates; this feature enables you to update maps and download updates made by other drivers. If you want the fastest route possible to your destination, all you have to do is tap on the screen and access the IQ routes feature, which is of big help wherever you may find yourself.
If you want to chuck your old GPS gadget away, then this one might or might not be a good option. TomTom has other models that are far better than the VIA 1405M one.