Sunday, March 18, 2012

TomTom comparison chart

TomTom’s feature set can be confusing, but the chart below should go a long way towards clearing that up. The links at the top of the chart go to our TomTom reviews. A couple of notes; the Bluetooth feature refers to units that support hands free cell phone use. Some TomTom units have Bluetooth but use it solely for TomTom PLUS services. Also, older and discontinued models have been moved to a separate chart further down the page.

NEW: Click on column headers to sort chart. You can also click here for descriptions and more information about various features.

Model Maps Screen size Speaks street names Live traffic Blue- tooth Advanced Lane Guidance Lifetime maps Menu Voice command IQ Routes Compare prices
GO LIVE 1535M U.S. Canada Mexico 5″ Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Standard Yes Yes
Compare prices

GO 2535M LIVE U.S. Canada Mexico 5″ Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Standard Yes Yes
Compare prices

GO 2535TM WTE U.S. Canada Mexico Europe 5″ Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Standard Yes Yes
Compare prices

Start 45M U.S. Canada 4.3″ Yes No No Yes Yes Standard No Yes
Start 55TM U.S. Canada 5″ Yes Lifetime No Yes Yes Standard No Yes
Compare prices

VIA 1405TM U.S. Canada Mexico 4.3″ Yes Lifetime No Yes Yes Standard No Yes
Compare prices

VIA 1505TM U.S. Canada Mexico 5″ Yes Lifetime No Yes Yes Standard No Yes
Compare prices
VIA 1435TM U.S. Canada Mexico 4.3″ Yes Lifetime Yes Yes Yes Standard Yes Yes
Compare prices

VIA 1505M U.S. Canada Mexico 5″ Yes No No Yes Yes Standard No Yes
Compare prices

VIA 1505TM U.S. Canada Mexico 5″ Yes Lifetime No Yes Yes Standard No Yes
Compare prices
VIA 1535TM U.S. Canada Mexico 5″ Yes Lifetime Yes Yes Yes Standard Yes Yes
Compare prices

VIA 1605TM U.S. Canada Mexico 6″ Yes Lifetime No Yes Yes Standard No Yes
Compare prices

Older and discontinued models

Model Maps Screen size Speaks street names Live traffic Blue- tooth Advanced Lane Guidance Lifetime maps Menu Voice command IQ Routes Compare prices
EASE U.S. 3.5″ Yes No No No No Easy No Yes Compare prices
GO 630 U.S. Canada 4.3” Yes Option Yes Yes No Standard Yes Yes Compare prices
GO 2505TM U.S. Canada 5″ Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Standard Yes Yes
Compare prices

ONE 130S U.S. Canada 3.5″ Yes Option No Yes No Standard No No Compare prices
XL 325 U.S. 4.3″ No Option No No No Standard No Yes Compare prices
XL 325S U.S. 4.3″ Yes Option No No No Standard No Yes Compare prices
XL 325SE U.S. 4.3″ Yes Option No No No Standard No Yes Compare prices
XL 330S U.S. Canada Mexico 4.3″ Yes Option No Yes No Standard No Yes Compare prices
XL 335S U.S. Canada 4.3″ Yes Option No Yes No Standard No Yes Compare prices
XL 335SE U.S. Canada 4.3″ Yes Option No Yes No Easy No Yes
Compare prices

XL 335T U.S. Canada 4.3″ Yes Lifetime No Yes No Standard No Yes Compare prices
XL 335TM U.S. Canada 4.3″ Yes Lifetime No Yes Yes Standard No Yes Compare prices
XL 340M U.S. Canada Mexico 4.3″ Yes Option No Yes Yes Standard No Yes Compare prices
XL 340S U.S. Canada Mexico 4.3″ Yes Option No Yes No Standard No Yes Compare prices
XL 340S LIVE U.S. Canada Mexico 4.3″ Yes Yes No Yes No Standard No Yes Compare prices
XL 340TM U.S. Canada Mexico 4.3″ Yes Lifetime (US & Canada only) No Yes Yes Standard No Yes Compare prices
XXL 540M U.S. Canada 5.0″ Yes Option No Yes Yes Standard No Yes Compare prices
XXL 540S U.S. Canada Mexico 5.0″ Yes Option No Yes No Standard No Yes Compare prices
XXL 540S WTE U.S. Canada Mexico Europe 5.0″ Yes Option No Yes No Standard No Yes Compare prices
XXL 540TM U.S. Canada Mexico 5.0″ Yes Lifetime No Yes Yes Standard No Yes Compare prices
XXL 540TM WTE U.S. Canada Mexico Europe 5.0″ Yes Lifetime (US & Canada only) No Yes (US Canada Mexico only) Standard No Yes Compare prices
XXL 550TM U.S. 5.0″ Yes Lifetime No Yes Yes Easy No Yes Compare prices

Even older discontinued models

Model Maps Screen size Speaks street names Map Share Traffic Blue- tooth FM trans- mitter iPod control MP3 player Remote control Voice command IQ Routes Compare prices
GO 720 U.S. Canada 4.3″ Yes Yes Option Yes Yes Option Yes Option No No Compare prices
GO 730 U.S. Canada 4.3″ Yes Yes Option Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes Compare prices
GO 740 LIVE U.S. Canada 4.3″ Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Compare prices
GO 920 U.S. Canada Europe 4.3″ Yes Yes Option Yes Yes Option Yes Yes Yes No Compare prices
GO 920T U.S. Canada Europe 4.3″ Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Option Yes Yes Yes No Compare prices
GO 930 U.S. Canada Europe 4.3″ Yes Yes Option Yes Yes Option Yes Yes Yes Yes Compare prices
GO 930T U.S. Canada Europe 4.3″ Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Option Yes Yes Yes Yes Compare prices
ONE 3rd edition U.S. Canada 3.5″ No Yes Option No No No No No No No Compare prices
ONE 125 U.S. 3.5″ No Yes Option No No No No No No No Compare prices
ONE 125SE U.S. 3.5″ Yes Yes Option No No No No No No No Compare prices
ONE 130 U.S. Canada 3.5″ No Yes Option No No No No No No No Compare prices
ONE 140 U.S. Canada 3.5″ No Yes Option No No No No No No Yes Compare prices
ONE 140S U.S. Canada 3.5″ Yes Yes Option No No No No No No Yes Compare prices
ONE XL U.S. Canada 4.3″ No When updated Option No No No No No No No Compare prices
ONE XL-S U.S. Canada 4.3″ Yes Yes Option No No No No No No No Compare prices
XL 330 U.S. Canada Mexico 4.3″ No Yes Option No No No No No No No Compare prices
XL 340 U.S. Canada Mexico 4.3″ No Yes Option No No No No No No Yes Compare prices
XXL 530-S U.S. Canada 5.0″ Yes Yes Option No No No No No No Yes Compare prices
Model Maps Screen size Speaks street names Map Share Traffic Blue- tooth FM trans- mitter iPod control MP3 player Remote control Voice command IQ Routes Compare prices

Feature descriptions

  • Speaks street names – Formally known as text-to-speech, this function allows the device to call out the name of the street for upcoming turns, so you’ll hear “approaching right turn, Maple Street” instead of just “approaching right turn.” A very helpful feature.
  • Live traffic – A nice feature that isn’t quite ready for prime time. Expect lots of inaccurate reports as well as incidents that aren’t reported. Delivered via FM, this service is provided by the Traffic Message Channel, hence you will sometimes see it referred to as FM-TMC. Here is a link to a coverage map. “Lifetime” indicates no subscription fees.
  • Bluetooth for hands-free cell phone use – Another nice idea, and I’ve seen signs that TomTom’s sound quality is better than that of other brands.
  • Advanced lane guidance – Provides a visual representation of exits, and displays the number of lanes and proper lane(s) to be in.
  • Lifetime maps – Lifetime map updates provided (typically quarterly) at no extra cost.
  • Menu – The “Easy Menu” is simplified, but these models offer less customization options and other features than units with the standard interface.
  • Voice commands – Too bad it isn’t that great of a feature. For one that is, check out my Garmin nuvi 880 review.
  • IQ Routes – This feature bases routing decisions on historical traffic data, broken down by the day of the week and time of day, the latter in 15 minute increments. Routing behavior is greatly improved, even to the point of directing you to locally known shortcuts.
  • iPod control – Control your iPod via your TomTom touch screen
  • Map Share – Allows you to make certain map corrections on the device, share them with others, and receive their corrections as well. Found on all current models.

Return to GPS Tracklog


  1. PS- I’d also be very interested in a quick run down on what the T and TM and S models indicate? Im amazed that they have so many models/series, as am unable to discern many differences between them.

    • S means text-to-speech (calls out street names). T & M models have this too (even though they don’t sport an S!). T means lifetime traffic, while M means lifetime map updates.

      It’s gonna get worse, as they are about to introduce 16 new models!

      • Thanks, and are you kidding me?? I’m at a loss to understand how they could differentiate/find a market for more models! We would have bought one sooner if we could have clearly identified differences and one to suit us. More models is not going to help…

  2. Sorry- yes I am lazy but I do get that some of my questions can be answered from the comparison chart above. Im wondering what other differences there are usage wise between them.
    Because I AM lazy though, I would love the option to sort the above chart by features, and maybe a tick features search option…;) :0

  3. Rich,

    As others have commented TT should be ashamed that they don’t have a Comparison Chart or more comprehensive Technical Specifications to allow for side-by-side comparison. Your chart goes a long way to fill that void.

    Let me point out however that I have a GO 630 and it does have a Bluetooth feature that supports hands free cell phone use. Although it does not have a full Voice Command feature, it does have Voice Address input that allows you to enter destination details verbally.

    Perhaps you can help me clear up some confusion as to whether the traffic-enabled car DC charger will work with GO 630. I have seen the traffic receiver (the same one that is included with the 335SE-TM) advertised by suppliers on the web who state that it works with the GO 630, GO 730 and GO 930 etc. I spoke with a TT technical rep who was emphatic that it WOULD work but when I called back for further information another rep told me that it will NOT work.

    Can you shed any light on the subject?

    Thanks for the great work!

  4. Thanks for your input.

    I can shed some light on the last link. The 335 adapter won’t work because the USB port is different than the GO 630. There is one like it that has the right sized adapter and the reason, according to the first TT rep that I spoke with, it doesn’t appear on the TT site is because they currently don’t have it in stock. He suggested that I go on the web to find one.

    I found a supplier and contacted them. They have sold 3 out the 10 available and have not heard back from anyone that it doesn’t work. I guess that’s evidence on the side of the ledger that it will work.

    It is so disheartening that I can’t get a consistent answer from TT.

    I was one of the first customers in North America to purchase the original GO and have purchased three additional TT models since. At the present time I’m very satisfied with the functionality of the GO 630 so I might just chance it. If I do, I’ll let you know how I make out.

    On the other hand I’m keeping an open mind on purchasing a newer unit and found your review of the 2505TM to be very informative.

    Do you have any comments on the new VIA series? If not will any be forthcoming?

    Thanks again

  5. I forgot to add that the reason I am disappointed with TT Customer Service is that I have found them so helpful and cooperative in the past. For example, I accidentally “fried” my original GO and readily admitted to them that it was my fault. They replaced it with a new unit free of charge in just a three day turnaround. When I had trouble with the purchase of my ONE 125SE from QVC they intervened and resolved the problem.

  6. I did try to work this out myself (figured if I could work out xxl was just a bigger xl then it might be possible) but is there also a simple answer to the difference between series xl/via/go? Apologies if it’s obvious…

  7. LOVE the sort function. Narrowed it down to 7 options instantly. Great job!

  8. j ferguson says:

    This is certainly a helpful chart and I’m astonished that tt doesn’t have one. I’ve used gps on the boat for years, but this will be a new purchase of an automobile unit for a trip to the uk. Should I buy one of the XXL540s which come with europe maps but no sd slot, or buy a unit with the sd slot and for $59, a UK map to add the the built in US map. I think i want the flexibility but maybe the built-in 4 gigs on the 540 series should be enough. we travel with a netbook so it wouldn’t be hard to switch maps in and out if the capacity was limiting.

    I’m not enchanted with most of the other features, and I certainly don;t want to listen to gratutitous remarks about5 my car from one of these things. I assume that’s something that can be toggled off.

    but to the point, given a 4 gig ram capacity, is an sd slot really necessary?

    thanks for taking the trouble to create this useful chart.


    • You might want to look at the XXL 540 series World Traveler Editions, which come with US & European maps. Though I think you can only load one at a time. My understanding is that none of the units have enough storage to accomodate both, but I could be wrong.

      An SD slot would keep you from having to juggle the maps, which is pretty enticing.

      Now what gratuitous remarks are you talking about?!

      • j ferguson says:

        a reviewer reported that the gps he bought said something like “this is certainly not a hearse.”

        If the WTE versions arrive without capacity to hold europe and us at same time, is there a dvd with all the maps or are you supposed to find a T1 and download them?

        My hope would be to buy a unit where the maps were already installed or with an SD slot where i could add only the UK map which is a more downloadable size.

        the reviews of the xxl540 tm wte suggest that the maps are all installed. Does anyone KNOW this is incorrect – ie. from direct experience.
        and this assumes that the unit they received was actually the WTE edition?

        • Ok, I checked and they do both come preloaded, the problem is once you download an update there isn’t enough room for them both. You would need to manage this online; there is no DVD.

          You shouldn’t get any strange comments unless you load an extra voice. That’s where such things come from. They offer cartoon characters celebrity voices, etc.

          • j ferguson says:

            Thanks Rich,
            this is just the help I was looking for.

            as an aside, in the days before nationwide radar coverage, flying an instrument flight plan required reporting by radio at various enroute fixes. the report was required to include 7 items as i remember. who, where now, when now, where next, when next, altitude, and “anything else pertaining to the safety of flight”

            I used to like to throw in “haste makes waste.” but quit after a discussion of whether that had anything to do with the safety of flight.

            I imagined the comments from the tomtom might be of similar value.

  9. j ferguson says:

    I bought an XXL540 TM WTE. I like the interface and it indeed came with europe, canada, us, and mexico loaded.

    And you were right. doing the initial update works only with the US-Can-Mex update in that it will fit without removing anything. To upload the european update, tomtom is telling me to move the US-CAN-MEX to my computer to make room – those are the files I just brought up to date after hours of downloading at 350 kbs on a connection that can do 1.5 mbs. One nice thing about their download is that if there is a hiccup, you can pick up where you left off, don’t need to start again from scratch.

    I’m hoping that I’ll be able to figure out how to update only the UK for this coming trip. Maybe not possible.

    The process seems to take hours although it goes on unattended. they must be nuts to think that anyone would buy a World Travel Edition auto-gps that cannot contain even Europe and America simultaneously. Do they really think a customer has hours to shuffle maps in and out of a system that was supposed to hold at least what it nominally came with?

    I’ll keep it and grow to like it, but it seems at the outset to be just another product packaged up by people who have never done what it is supposed to support – take a quick trip and have a working navigator at each end of the flight.

    of course I could have misunderstood something in here somewhere.

  10. j ferguson says:

    to be clear about above. it has the europe it came with and updated us-can-mex in it right now. I’m going to leave it that way.

  11. j ferguson says:

    Update on above:
    TomTom offers an alternative to removing one of the maps, but this will only work if using Zones will do the job. Their support page describes how to set zones (a zone is part of a map, say northern europe is one zone, southern is another zone). unfortunately, using the latest HOME version (their device management program which runs on Windows or Mac) the method described is not supported.

    So what happens when you get ready to update your Europe 2Gig map is Home tells you it won’t fit, and suggests you remove the US pacakge – and it will do this by default. If you don’t want to do this, you leave it in and “continue” to the next page where you are again told it won’t fit, but AHA!, here there is a reference to zoning and an option to “continue” Do continue and you see a map giving you a 2 zone choice, northern or southern europe either of which will fit.

    I picked one and it looks good to go. interesting question is whether the other zone will still be on the TomTom un-updated.

    • Thanks J. Great information. So good in fact, that I added a link to your comments under More Resources in each of the 540 series WTE pages on the site. Thanks for taking the time to share. I’m sure it will be a big help to folks researching these models.

      • j ferguson says:

        i sent the tomtom guys a note suggesting that they need a couple of more screens in HOME, their pc/Mac device management program so that when you find out the updates won’t fit, you know right away what the choices are and they don’t default you into removing maps which could stay if you reduced the amount of update by using the zone option.

        It’s funny, they’ve got the system well thought out, but the software needed to be tested on someone who didn’t know what would happen next.

        I like though, I’m glad i bought it and expect it to be a big help as we navigate Scotland in June. thanks for your very useful site as well.

      • j ferguson says:

        We don’t own a car so haven’t had a chance to use the XXL540 wte until last weekend. We rented a car and traveled around South Florida with which we are very familiar having lived here for 14 years. The guidance provided is very good. I especially liked the way it continues to re-plan your route if you don’t follow the one it has recommended. I also liked that it does the bread-crumb trick and lets you retrace your trip back to its origin. We didn’t get on to any one-way streets so don’t know how it deals with a return trip that only works in one direction.

        The way ours is now setup it prefers limited access motorways and tends to direct you to them sometimes at the cost of serious additional mileage. We thought it very important to run it for a while in an area we knew well so that we could get used to what it meant when it said keep left etc.

        I have no experience with any other navigator. I do have 10 years with the plotting software on our boat, but it only shows where we are and lets me design routes to use for the autopilot – much less sophisticated.

        I have say that I’m delighted with it.

        • Thanks j. I appreciate you taking the time to share your experience. You’re wise to use it near home before setting out on a long road trip with it.

          • j ferguson says:

            Back from trip to UK. heathrow-Portsmouth-oxford-cotswolds-wales-york-scotland-edinburgh.

            It performed brilliantly although our unfamiliarity with the routes means we could not ascertain whether it had chosen the best. our map, which was the latest as of early June had the old, and now incorrect, location for rental car turn-ins at Edinburgh Airport.

            Detail included the 1/4 mile drive into friends’ estate which amazed us. Although we both have plenty of experience (at 68) navigating with maps and charts, we likely wouldn’t have been able to cover this ambitious trip without it.

            As an aside, we found the access geometry on UK highways far more consistent than the variety of confusing choices found in the US. first time UK visitors to the US must go nuts with exiting superhighways sometimes from the left sometimes from the right and almost always without sufficient warning to get into the proper lane.

  12. Bill Monette says:

    I purchased the XXL550M only to find out the Easy menu of this model excludes the input of any Lat/Long coordinates. This feature is available in all models except the EASE, XL335SE and the XXL550 series. I like the Lifetime Maps but I would have bought a different model if the Easy Menu limitation had been fully explained and the features that are removed mentioned somewhere.

    • Thanks Bill. They had a lot of complaints about this menu system, and actually added a few features back, but apparently not that one. I assume you’ve updated the firmware just to be sure.

      • Bill Monette says:

        Yes, I updated the firmware and the maps already in March. I see the menu includes the custom POI, but I’ll have to check if the version was 9.150 or earlier.

  13. I think it would be helpful to add a column for the memory/disk space of each model.


  14. Great site for TT info! I purchased a 335T for my daughter yesterday, based on a great price/deal and what I think are adequate features. She hasn’t opened it yet. I’m now seeing that the drive space is rather limited (1GB). Will newer map updates fit on this unit? I’ve seen a few sites that look like the newer maps are over 1 gig. Does TT compress the downloads somehow?

    • Usually people have to either remove some extraneous files (foreign language voices, etc.) or only load a portion of the maps (e.g., Eastern US or Western US only).

      • Thanks again! You have been very helpful. My daughter opened the TT last night for her Bday and she hasn’t put it down since. Very nice unit and I’m thinking of one for the spouse now. At $99 (Target) it’s tough to pass up the deal.

        • Update… had to contact TT cust serv. New unit would not update without errors. Lost all maps trying to get get latest version. Needed to re-format and download everything. Not something I should have to do with a new unit. Cust serv was very helpful though.

  15. Jim Morrison, Websight M Web South Africa.
    I am thinking of geting either your product or Garmin, but have been advised that their upgrade maps are damed expensive.
    We have speed camera’s and dis-honest cops and I want to be able to prove that the speed “They” say I was doing was incorrect. Does your machine have any form of Memory, that I could produce in Court if it came to that ?
    With so many dis-continued models, will these be sold here as the “Latest Avaiable”, ’cause some of the prices seem excessive compared to Garmin.
    For Hiker’s, do you have a sola powered model ?
    Looking forward to your reply with interest, Johannesburg is -2C at night !!

  16. I am thinking of geting either your product or Garmin, but have been advised that their upgrade maps are damed expensive.
    We have speed camera’s and dis-honest cops and I want to be able to prove that the speed “They” say I was doing was incorrect. Does your machine have any form of Memory, that I could produce in Court if it came to that ?
    With so many dis-continued models, will these be sold here as the “Latest Avaiable”, ’cause some of the prices seem excessive compared to Garmin.
    For Hiker’s, do you have a sola powered model ?
    Looking forward to your reply with interest, Johannesburg is -2C at night !! Sorry, I am over 80 and these new gadgets are mind boggling, but I will buy one ASAP.J.M

    • I’m not sure about South Africa, but here in the US you can get a Garmin lifetime map update card for as low as $75 USD – a pretty good deal. Some units are sold bundled with lifetime updates too.

      Garmin nuvis keep a record of your track, but its just coordinates and time. You would need to calculate the speed from that.

      I don’t know of any solar powered models.

  17. Could you put a “Last Updated” on this? Thanks! Put google adwords on here so maybe it would pay a little for your time.

  18. I’ll think about it. This one was last updated August 2.

  19. Having making email and telephone inquires to TomTom about a 5″ GPS that accepted multiple route and via travel points I purchased the XXL-540-TM as apparently they have a very few that meet this requirement. Then the fun started, in connecting the GPS to my computer it installed TomTom Home automatically and started downloading the initial update. About half way in the download it informed me that a critical update to the Home software needed to be downloaded. Long story shortened, seven days later with TomTom support I final have the update and my life time update activation accepted (takes about 3 hours on a 3 meg connection). During this period I lost all my desktop icons, could not change the PC wallpaper, lost all my documents and photos, (have found about everything as they were just tagged as hidden files) got invalid activation on the life maps, and insufficient GPS memory for maps. All the problems was getting all the data deleted that was acquired by the first Home software, just uninstalling does not get rid of everything needed to be deleted.

    I am posting this to let others know that you should go to TomTom and download the newest Home product and install it before hooking your GPS to your computer.

    The 540-TM is also a disappointment. Does not have near the map detail as a Garmin I also have. It’s zoom also lets you only see a max of about 1/4 mile ahead of your location versus the Garmin’s about 2 miles at highway speeds. I had a GO720 that was twice the unit that the XXL-540 is. The TomTom spoken instructions are superior to the Garmin as the Garmin calls out the city street only when you are really following a highway and the TomTom speaks the street and highway names.

    Enough said make your own decisions. Going back to TomTom support and see if anything can be done about short viewing distance and verbal instructions of the XXL-540, if not I may replace the XXL-540.

    Garmin and especially TomTom need to seriously update their GPS specifications and capabilities on their web site and advertisements as these are very minimal at best.

    • Thanks Marvin. Good info, especially the TomTom HOME update. Yikes!

      • Some of the problems could have been caused by TT not having instructions for Windows 7. They said to use the instructions given for Windows Vista which were not totally the same.
        Still have one problem left that I know of, TweetDeck will load and run, however it will not display on the screen other than tweet flag for about 4 seconds.

  20. Thanks for putting this together, although I still don’t have the foggiest notion what the differences are among the different TomTom product lines (GO, ONE, XL, XXL, VIA, etc). Is it really necessary for these guys to produce 2,000 different car navigation devices?

    The table incorrectly states that the TomTom ONE 125SE has no text-to-speech, even though the review says it does. I own this device and the review is correct.

    • Thanks Jason. I’ve corrected it.

      If you can let me know what features you are interested in, I can try to make a recommendation. Here’s a great deal, BTW:

      • Rich, thank you so much for the recommendation. By coincidence, I spent over an hour yesterday using your site to gain an understanding of the differences among the TomTom product lines. I’m trying to get a good GPS for my dad’s birthday. After all the research, I decided not to get the higher end GO and VIA models, even though they look slick, because they don’t use the great TomTom Home software but instead rely on some beta software that doesn’t work right or offer any of the premium TomTom features. In the end, I chose the XXL 540TM, the exact same product you just recommended! So I am particularly grateful for the deal you just pointed me to, as it is a gigantic savings. My only concern with this model is the memory limitation. I hope this unit can hold the latest versions of the U.S. map. For $94 I’m willing to gamble.

  21. Rich, don’t know whether others are having this problem, but my TT 540TM has been acting weird recently. When on a route towards a programmed destination, it will intermittently provide spurious voice and visual turn instructions that are obviously erroneous. Also,my 540 will start doing multiple “recalculations” during which no travel or turn information is provided. Any thoughts or suggestions? Never had either of these problems with my older TT 920

    Also, is there a device and means of doing a GPS route and tracking using google earth and/or google maps while traveling and connected to the Internet?
    Best regards, ray

  22. RAY, When did you originally get your 540TM? There were many problems with the ones they tried to rush out for last Xmas, especially those sent to Amazon to sell.

  23. Ray, Mine still works fine. I got it in the summer of 2010. Joe

  24. Sue Sullivan says:

    Rick, I like my vent mount that I use for my well used xl one s or at least that is what I think its name is.
    Can you recommend a tomtom that can be vent mounted… I was considering the xxl540tm but with a fixed mount on the back, I don’t think I can do that.
    Can you suggest a comparative one that could be vent mounted?
    TIA for a great web site that makes sense of so much.

  25. Your comparison chart is fantastic! However, I am surprised that your chart and your readers do not mention “Itinerary Planning”. It is a wonderful feature on older models (TT 330, 500 series, and Rider) if you know how to use it. TomTom has made a big mistake by dropping it. Itinerary Planning is especially useful when coupled to the “Tyre” software, that links multiple way-points together from Google Maps, and gives you wonderful back-roads, scenic routes.

  26. December 16th, looking at what is available in South Africa (today) Tom Tom Stsrt up v2, looks good, tells you were you are, but you can not put in a GPS address, this is avaialble @ R899.95
    One that does, is over R3000, as a pensioner, it is a pity that the “jump” is so large, but I believe s/h ones are available, I’m checking the local papers daily.
    Any info, woud be apreciated, Jim (PLEASE PRINT THIS) Thanks, J

  27. Our daughter has a TomTom, not sure of the model off the top of my head, but we’re trying to update it and keep getting error messages while the USA-Can-Mex map is trying to install internally. I remember reading sometime back when I purchased the unit someone recommended deleting a lot of the extraneous files, but I can’t remember what those might be and don’t know quite how to do that. Do I go into the TomTom Home and delete the files there? I’m thinking they suggested getting rid of the other languages, but not sure if there were other files as well. Any advice? And do you think this would help the problem? All I know is that the “update” took approx. five hours to download, then couldn’t be completed. UGH!

  28. bought a tom tom with unlimited map updates new when i plug in they say im not eligible for updates, unless i have my receipt from walmart where i bought it 2-3 months ago.
    prity much saying thanks for the extra $70 for nothing

    • Chris:

      Check the documentation that came with your TomTom. It should contain an 11 digit alphanumeric Acvtivation Code.

      Once you have the code, create an account using the “My TomTom” web application.

      Once you have created the account connect your device to your computer. After being connected, click on the the green “My TomTom” button in the upper right hand corner of the web application. From the drop down list select “Activate Code” Follow the instructions.

      Once your device is activated and your signed in to My TomTom you should see the updates (maps etc.) available for your under “My Overview” and you can install the updates accordingly

      Hope this helps

  29. Here in Canada, I’m seeing TomTom XL 350W for sale ($100, regular $180) and TomTom VIA 1400 ($60, regular $150). I don’t see those models on the chart above. Why not?

    Which one is a better value?

    • The models vary by country and I can’t list them all. The ones above are US models. The VIA series is newer and between the two I’d probably go for it.

  30. Nancy Reynolds says:

    thinking of buying a Tom Tom. have a Garmin that loses Satellite connection constantly. Is there a Tom Tom that is more reliable?
    thank you,

  31. So I bought a TomTom XXL 540TM (lifetime traffic & maps) in March 2011 (for $121.04 on Amazon after all discounts, tax, and free shipping was applied). Wanted to give a report on how it has held up after 1 yrs. time. Unfortunately, just last week it fell off its dashboard holder (AGAIN!!!), hit my gear shifter, which created a diagonal crack across the screen, and now it doesn’t work. GRRRR! So obviously that is going to affect my overall rating of the product and I can only HOPE that this doesn’t become one of those “Murphy’s Law” issues where the thing breaks JUST AFTER the 1 yr. warranty expires. That would REALLY SUCK!! Overall, I would rate the product a 2.5 out of 5 and here is why:

    A) As mentioned, even after I secure the unit *very* tightly onto its dashboard suction, the thing will suddenly fall off and tumble to the floor while I’m driving. VERY annoying!

    B) The cradle piece that actually holds the unit to the suction is *very* stiff and the TomTom pops out of it *every* time I try to adjust the cradle while the TomTom is in it – regardless of how tight it is snapped into the holder (which the locking “snap” isn’t very tight to begin with). Sometimes this will cause the loss of suction, too, so when I’m driving and this happens I have to pull over and put everything back to together. VERY annoying!

    ( C) Although I’m not overly tech savvy, I’m not dumb either and I found the TomTom website to be *very* UNuser-friendly. All I would ever need to do is update the lifetime maps and even that is a huge hassle and my unit wouldn’t always recognize the website when plugged into my laptop. Takes at least 10-15 min to get this one task done! I’m just a basic user who didn’t need all of the “bells & whistles” that the unit may have but I did take the time to explore these features initially so I know they are there.

    D) The unit itself isn’t very “user-friendly” (in my opinion) when it comes to adjusting settings. Menu options just don’t have things in “logicial” places and I have to constantly hunt for certain things I want to adjust. GRRRRR!

    Anyone else have any of these issues? If I’m “S-O-L” through either TomTom or Amazon when I inquire about the warranty, I will purchase another GPS but DEFINITELY NOT ANY TOM TOMS!!!!! Granted, this is the first and only GPS product I have ever used but I can’t imagine the other products would be that much worse than this one! 🙂

  32. robbyray says:

    Rich, I continue to have trouble with GPS functionality of my TT 540. I’ve undpated (lifetime maps) regularly but the GPS is what is malfunctioning, i.e., searching for satellites when I’ve been using it for hours and still out in thw wide open blue skys. Then it suddenly shift into telling me to turn left in the middle of a freeway or some other crazy move. It most often loses connectivity to the satellite when I’m approaching a large city and need it the most. TomTom offers no solution. How do I upgrade the GPS firmware and what is the latest firmware for the 540? Thanks, you’ve been such a big help in the past, I hope this one has a simple fix??? ray

  33. robbyray says:

    Rich, How do I upgrade the GPS firmware and what is the latest firmware for the 540? Thanks, you’ve been such a big help in the past, I hope my errant GPS has a simple fix??? ray

  34. bought a Tomtom 1000 about 18 months ago – really liked the mounting & cabling system. Operation was good BUT hated the My Tomtom web site cant find what I want & after logging in it continues to ask me to log in again!!! Eventually I get in, find what I want & perform update as requested. Next day same message to update , do it again & next day etc.
    Other much more annoying problem is battery life. Approx 8 months after purchase the battery died completely. Unit was replaced under warrantee with a Go 1050. Also very nice to use – same issue with My Tomtom web site. 5 months later battery in this one dies too. Now it requires a couple of minutes to turn on each time I use the car & has zero useable time out of it. Still happy with the way it performs in general but after the last (mandatory) upgrade it no longer keeps any changes I make to screen colour etc. Today it also ‘lost’ my home address. Bluetooth is good; even does text to voice on my sms’s but when I try to call back bluetooth drops out?
    Except for the battery problem I’m happy with the unit but I dont want to be paying for a service call evry 6 months for a new battery. Are others having the same problem? Both batteries quit suddenly on hot days. Tomtom say battery cant be changed by the owner – anyone tried?

  35. Reading your page for the 340-S it stated that the 340-S added lane guidance, IQ routes, and Mexico maps. In your comparison chart however it shows both models having those features. Is a correction/clarification needed somewhere?

  36. Rich,

    I’m guessing you’re already aware that something is wrong with displaying the tomtom comparison charts on the webpage right now. Tested Safari, Camino, and Firefox on the Mac.


    • No, I had no idea. Thanks for letting me know. With 1800+ pages, that’s often the only way I find out about errors. Hopefully it will be fixed in the next 24-48 hours. I’m waiting to hear back from my theme developer.

  37. robbyray says:

    Rich Owings has always provided excellent help and comparisons for which I remain very grateful. My problem tonight after being a TomTom user for many years with three different TomTom GPS devices (GO 920 “my favorite”, XXL 550 TM, XXL 540 TM) is that I’ve concluded that TomTom has too many flaws to be considered a premium product. My problems started years ago with a crazy total loss of functionality (flashing, uncontrollable screens) in the 920 due to dirt under the bezel. That was fixed by using a piece of cardboard and clearing the debris between the screen and the bezel. This fix was not something that TomTom had on their web site but was the result of an Internet search. However the biggest problems have been with the total loss of GPS signal and thus total loss of device functionality while driving in unknown, large city routes in a motorhome when suddenly, with a clear, uninhibited view of the sky, the 540 lost satellite signal and stopped functioning. This was not only inconvenient, it was frustrating when you need a GPS the most, it dies due to a non-fixable “loss of GPS signal” when the bright blue sky was all around. Lastly, and the final straw, the service from TomTom and the web site is one of the most “unfriendly user” service and site I’ve experienced. Tonight, based on Rich’s excellent advice, I tried to fix the GPS loss of satellite signal problem by reinstalling the latest Home program. I tried to do this simple step using a new laptop. My GPS evidently had code from my prior updates embedded and explicitly tied to my old laptop and consequently it did not recognize the new computer and consequently it did not allow me access to Home. The instructions from TomTom, once I found them on their web site were not difficult to navigate, but good code in this day and age should never require manual intervention for something as common and simple as logging in using a different computer. I even established a new account with a different email address and password to no avail. When I went to TomTom online help to find a simpler way to deal with the problem, the technician wanted $30 to offer me the help I needed. Earlier, when my first 540 malfunctioned right after I had purchased it and wasn’t fixable, returning it was difficult and after I returned everything in the original box, I was told I shouldn’t have shipped everything back — just the device itself. TomTom did correct the return with the rest of the charger, etc., but the experience was nothing as quick and simple as I’ve experienced with the likes of Amazon, Dell, and other online-initiated repairs or returns. So my bottom line, compared to a competitor’s product I recently purchased, is that TomTom is OK but at the low end of average relative to online support and help. It’s possible that I’ve just used these devices for too long and others have not experienced any of these problems. There are many things I like about a TomTom, especially user inputs for updates, and the user-friendly use of the device itself. If my problems are unique to me, I hope others speak up and calm the waters compared to my experience. I hope these comments are helpful to TomTom and to others who are considering purchasing a new TomTom device.

  38. Id like to thank you for the excellent helpful website. Im ready to buy my 4th Tom Tom and found their Website confusing in comparing the models and knowing what some new features do. Ive decided on the via1535 as it has all the features with lifetime maps and traffic services.

    You even added the reviews which I really like too.
    I noticed a women stated her Tom Tom kept falling offer her window. Do you think this is because they are too big now? I found with my other ones unless I put some water or lotion on the suction cup it would fall off too. Could it be she was not doing it properly? Is there a better suction mount to buy in aftermarket? I am a Realtor so I use my device all the time. I like how user friendly Tom Tom is compared to a Garmin which I purchased only once. My father has bought 2 Garmins and Im always trying to figure it out when Im using his car. Which inforces my use of Tom Tom products. As far as GPS signals go. I have never had an issue. However I did follow Tom Tom instructions and update my unit every week to every two weeks. Except for the very first time it only takes about 2-3 minutes. I dont wait months or years to do this. Perhaps this could be why others are having an issue. I dont keep it in my car overnight, I keep it in a pouch in my purse when I leave my car.

    Thanks Again for this great site. I look forward to your response on my question.

  39. jennifer B says:

    Uh, just to clarify . . . *I* was the one who posted about my TomTom constantly falling off of the mounting pad (which eventually led to the main screen cracking – rendering the unit now useless). I can assure you – I am mounting it properly and am a insulted by that comment for obvious reasons. To imply that I and the MANY MANY others who are experiencing this EXACT same problem don’t know how to read instructions. Maybe everyone *else* didn’t read the manual but I did – cover to cover – and I don’t recall anything about putting water or lotion on the mounting pad to improve the suction capability.

    As far as the TomTom website, I found it very user-friendly and easy to compare models. Maybe Jacquie isn’t reading it properly?

  40. Hi –

    Good info on the web page. Just wondered if you have any review or comparison info for the Tomtom ‘Start’ 55TM (seen at Sears) or the Tomtom ‘Via’ 1605TM (Costco). Wordering mostly which has better operating system, reliabilty, ease of use, etc. Thanks –

  41. FWIW, you’re missing the GO 910 from the “Even older discontinued models” section. (Mine I hope works properly again after a soft reset, thanks for the how to link.)

  42. My TOM TOM is ok, except for a few things. I recently PAID for a map update. You would think you would get lifetime updates for what you pay. You can almost buy a cheap new TOM TOM for what it costs for the update. However, my gripe is that AFTER purchasing and applying the update for the maps, the first address I entered as a destination could not be found. I called for support. The support rep was rude and gave me instructions that did not work. I finally entered an address in the proximity of the real address I was looking for and went on with life. I will use my TOM TOM, but I will never purchase another TOM TOM.

    • There will always be map errors. No map is perfect. Why not use Map Share and report the error?

    • Ed, I know how you feel. Replacing the gps is better and get one with free lifetime updates. I also just posted and I’m thinking of getting a 7″ inch tablet with gps and buy an app which is much much cheaper or FREE. Navifree is a free app which seems to have good reviews. And of course free updates. Lots of offline apps so you don’t need to have a Wifi or cellular connection in order to use. I still can’t believe how much TomTom and Garmin are charging and not offering free traffic and map updates on their devices. hence why I’m switching to a tablet, most likely the Google Nexus 7.

  43. Hello Rich,
    I have purchased my second Tom Tom 2405TM GPS device and the battery on both units burned out within a month. I always have the device connected to my vehicle adapter as this is the only way the device will maintain to give traffic updates. Driving in southern california, this is a very important feature. Is the battery burning out due to having it plugged in all the time? Is this a typical problem for this Tom Tom 3405TM device? It’s unfortunate since I thought the device was awesome with the exception of the faulty battery.

    I am now thinking of purchasing a Garmin 2460LMT or 3790LMT. Which of these units would you recommend? Also, are you aware if either of these units have the same problem with their batteries?

    Thanks in advance!

    • I’ve heard complaints about short battery life, but not about it completely dying.

      Both Garmins are good, although I prefer the 2595LMT to either. I’ve heard of no issues with dead batteries on any of those models.

      • Rich,
        One of my concerns was not addressed and I’m not sure you can answer this, is an issue to have the device connected to my car power source at all times. Does this connection at all times burn out the battery? As I mentioned, the device only gives live traffic updates if is connect to power device.

        thanks again,

  44. I have had both TomToma and Garmin gps for my car. TomTom is slightly better. The Garmin just takes for ever to process anything. Just hangs when I try to spell out a name during the search in POI. Not really happy. My next car navi might be a tablet. Many apps available for very cheap and free. Worth a try, cant be as bad as these. Just wanted to share my thought if someone else is searching for a gps. I figure this way I get a tablet and a gps for a little more and not having to worry about two devices. Thanks for reading.

  45. Rich – Seems like this website is very helpful. However, I have bought both the Tom Tom Via 1400M and the Tom Tom Start 50 and am trying to figure out which one to keep and which one to return (I bought them both on sale on Black Friday). I was looking for reviews to compare the differences and neither is on your comparison chart. Do you know what the differences are? Also, someone at one of the stores I bought at said that one of them requires a subscription. Do you know if this is true? I have been to multiple websites and cannot find anything about this and no other differences other than the Via having Bluetooth capabilities and Voice Recognition. Hope you can help. Thanks

    • They are both good units. With the VIA 1400M, you’ll get lifetime map updates. You would have to pay extra for those with the 50. That is the only “subscription” that would be involved. The VIA 1400M doesn’t have Bluetooth or voice recognition though; you’d have to step up to a 1×35 model for that.

  46. Tomtom (e.g. model 825 Go Live) use Lithium-Ion batteries, and Lithium-Ion quickly get damaged/worn out in hot conditions. Unfortunately, the window and the dashboard is hot territory, as well in the sunlight as in the hot air blower stream. So this combination of Li-Ion in hot conditions is bound to fail and need replacement quickly.
    See also: “High charge levels and elevated temperatures (whether from charging or ambient air) hasten capacity loss.” in

  47. David Crandon says:


    First of all, your website is awesome

    Where can I learn about the TomTom 2595? You mentioned it in a comment above, but it’s not on your comparison chart, nor is there a review for it. It’s also not on TomTom’s website. Is it an older unit? I was considering the 2495, but a dealbreaker for me is that it has to tell me what street I’m on, even if it’s just labeled on the map.

  48. What about the Tomtom Via models???????????????

  49. I had, for MANY yeas, what I believe was a TomTom XL IQ Routes Edition GPS. Someone, unbeknownst to me, recently decided they needed my GPS more than I did and lifted it from my car. I’d like to replace it as I REALLY liked that little GPS but I can’t determine if it was an XL330, XL335, or XL340…OR… is the TomTom XL IQ Routes Edition a separate model unto itself? I know the screen was 4.3″, had IQ routes (duh) and advanced lane guidance (wonderful option). I didn’t have lifetime maps or traffic or text to speech. I don’t believe I had any sort of simplified user menu. I know when I looked at maps I had “+” and “-” buttons on the touchscreen instead of the slide button on the left side of the screen like what’s on the XL330 model ( I HATE HATE HATE that little slide button).

    Any insight you may be able to provide would be greatly appreciated!


  1. […] TomTom comparison chart – GPS Tracklog – Comparison chart of TomTom auto GPS units, with links to reviews and price comparisons. … To upload the european update, tomtom is telling me to move the  … […]

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