Sunday, March 18, 2012

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TomTom XL 340-S review

tomtom-xl-340s-review
UPDATE: This model has been discontinued. For a list of current TomTom models and their features, please see our TomTom comparison chart.

The TomTom XL 340-S updated the TomTom XL 330-S, adding IQ Routes and Advanced Lane Guidance, and expanding map coverage to include Mexico, as well as the U.S. and Canada.

IQ Routes technology calculates the fastest route using historical traffic speed data for both the day of the week and time of day. The Advanced Lane Guidance feature, shown below on the smaller screen TomTom ONE 140–S, provides a visual representation of highway junctions, along with lane-specific directions. Mexican map coverage includes 35% of the 31 states with detailed coverage of Mexico City and Guadalajara, the main road network and 2,431 counties.
tomtom-140-alg

Related units

  • Drop down to the XL 340 and you’ll lose text-to-speech, so you’ll just hear “turn right” instead of “turn right, Oak Street”
  • Further down the product line, the TomTom ONE 140 and 140-S offer the same feature set, albeit with a smaller 3.5” screen; the ONE 140–S features text-to-speech, while the ONE 140 does not

Also, the TomTom ONE 340 series uses the EasyPort mount, which I’m not a big fan of. You can read more about that in my TomTom XL 330–S review.

More TomTom XL 340-S reviews

I’ll be posting more hands on GPS reviews as they appear, but in the meantime, here are some…

Other TomTom XL 340-S resources

Compare prices on the TomTom XL 340-S at these merchants:


About Rich Owings

Rich is the owner, editor and chief bottle-washer for GPS Tracklog. Connect with him on Twitter, Facebook or Google Plus.

Comments

  1. I’ve been looking at the TT XL 340S and the Magellan 1440/1470 as a 2nd unit. I have a nuvi 360 and love it. The new Magellans have some really nice features but I keep reading about slow satellite acquisition and routing issues. The TomTom while also having the features i would like to have seems to have firmware amd memory size (new maps to big) issues.
    Any thoughts/comments on these units ?
    thanks

  2. Rich Owings says:

    To be honest, I’m not sure you’ll like either after using a nuvi. The Magellans are greatly improved, but still aren’t on par with Garmin. I’m not sure if the TomTom map update issues have been resolved or not. I like IQ Routes, but dislike the dim screen. Why not go for a nuvi 255W or some other Garmin?

    • Rich,

      I certainly have my hesitations which is why I still haven’t pulled the trigger on a new unit… I have had my eye on the nuvi 255w since it came out, but I really like the idea of on-screen pois, adjustable screen info display, lane guidance to name a few. plus the price on the TT and Magellan are coming down. The on screen pois is the biggest to me…and I really like the idea of exit pois on the magellan…

  3. Rich Owings says:

    I like the Magellan exit POIs too, but be aware that the distances don’t update while viewing it.

    • Rich

      what makes the magellan units such poor performers ? i think they use the same chipset and maps as garmin, but in all of their units satellite acquisitin and routing always come up as negatives. I looked at the 1470 in the stores and the screen and interface features appear to be top notch, but without actually being able to test the unit live, I can only rely on user reviews. would i be wasting money on a 1470 unit ? it just looks to good to be true (features/options/ screen) for about $150-170 compared to the nuvis and tomotoms… i am still bouncing back and forth between the TT XL 340s and the Mag 1470, while also knowing that the 255W is a solid performer with less options..
      thanks for your reviews and replies. great site…

  4. Rich Owings says:

    They may not be using a “hot fix” technology that predicts satellite locations — that could be one difference. I haven’t used the new ones enough to know if they have routing issues or not. The best advice I can give is to buy from someplace with a decent return policy, and know what the time limits are on it. Costco is one option. It appears that Amazon is safe as long as you buy directly from them and not a third party… http://www.amazon.com/gp/help/customer/display.html?ie=UTF8&nodeId=901908

  5. The Garmin Nuvi was a huge disappointment to me. My first GPS was a TomTom and I went back to it after owning a Nuvi.

    • Same here.. I returned the 255 – too slow on acquisition PLUS the Magellan was compelling with the wide screen and features….

  6. DO NOT BUY THE XL-340 (even if offered for free) … THOUGH IT IS VERY APPEALING, IT HAS SEVERAL ISSUES…. GETS FROZEN MANY TIMES, USER FEATURES ARE NOT GR8 COMPARED TO GARMINS…..

  7. what Garmin model is the equivalent of this? But no Garmins have something similar to IQ routing technology in the tomtoms?

  8. Rich Owings says:

    No, they don’t have similar technology, unless they have decided not to disclose that. I’d say the nuvi 255W is fairly comparable.

  9. with the tomtoms do you get to change the starting point for your trip to whatever location you want?

  10. My question is with the garmin and tom tom units it appears that you cannot delete one entry.It seems that all the entrys have to be deleted which seems crazy. Please reply

  11. Rich Owings says:

    Are you talking about deleting Favorites? With a Garmin, you do this by selecting a Favorite and then Edit > Delete. With a TomTom, it’s Change Preferences > Manage Favorites, select one and Delete.

  12. I purchased a refurbished one and regretted it quickly! When I tried to use my free 30 day map update it told me it was expired (the day after it was delivered to my home). After clearing that up with TomTom, I found out that my GPS was actually broken and unable to download the current map. The system memory kept coming up short. I spent around 4-6 hours divided between numerous occasions speaking to different TomTom customer service people trying to figure out the problem, and I eventually even reformatted it. I even had an extremely rude TomTom customer service representative named Heather mouth off to me and actually hang up on me. This has been a terrible experience! Good luck if you go this route! Trust me, you don’t want this low quality junk nor the rude service experience!

  13. Hello there!.. Been reading through your site now for the last few hours and have a question, if you wouldn’t mind helping a newbie out?

    I want a GPS and have never had one before… I don’t require it to do a whole heck of a lot, just keep me from getting lost every time I try and go somewhere which is almost every single time I go out…no lie!

    I would like one that speaks the names of the streets as well as assisting me nearing my exits, etc.

    I was told that the Magellan’s are the best but now after reading here I’m not too sure… Could you recommend the simplest GPS for me…pretty please?

    Thank you!!

    • No, I’d avoid Magellan. They have improved somewhat recently, but their support is still pretty bad. Sounds like a basic Garmin nuvi would work well for you. If you don’t need or want live traffic, check out the Garmin nuvi 255W or the newer nuvi 1300. Feel free to follow up with more questions.

  14. Thanks so much for your reply!

    I’ve narrowed it down to two units; the nuvi255 and the 1350

    The 255, Walmart has right now with lifetime map updates but I do like the bigger size on the 1350… In your opinion, is the size difference REALLY that big of a difference?

    I’m thinking it could make that much of a difference, but I tend to prefer smaller things anyway.

    Thanks again for your help! This site has a ton of useful information!

  15. You’re welcome. Personally, I find 3.5″ units to be a bit cramped. Most people prefer the larger screens, but if your fingers are small, it may not matter that much to you. OTOH, since you like small things, keep in mind that the 1350 is thinner.

  16. I just checked the Walmart site and seems as though the 1350 is not in stock at this time…figures!!

    They do, however, have the 1300 in stock, and I hate to have things shipped to me… Is the only difference between the two the 1300 not having lane assist?

    I do thank you for your time in answering my questions!

  17. So sorry!… One more question… I think. HA!

    How about the Tomtom XL350?

    • It’s got the Easy Menu, kind of a dumbed down interface with fewer options (and maybe fewer points of interest too), though I heard that they have added a few features back via a recent firmware update.

  18. Geoff Pollard says:

    Hi,

    I am looking at purchasing a Tom Tom XL 340 in New Zealand. The specs say it has a 2GB memory. Assuming that is correct, is that sufficient memory to upgrade maps, purchase different maps for other countries etc?

    • Hmm, I’m seeing 1 GB. Regardless, I continue to see comments from folks having trouble updating maps on these TomTom units that come with little extra memory. I suspect that you would have to delete the NZ maps before installing those for another country.

      Note the warning on this page:
      http://www.tomtom.com/products/maps/select.php?D=68

      “IMPORTANT: Some versions of this device have limited internal memory. Before purchasing a map that may be too big, either use the device serial number checker (the box to the right) or connect your device to TomTom HOME to check how much memory you have available. ”

  19. Rich,

    I don’t know if this is a typo worth correcting, but there’s a “-1964″>” this mini review. Doesn’t seem like you lost anything, but figured you might have the original copy to verify.

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