TomTom Go Live 2050

If you're planning on driving across Europe and North America, the 35-map World edition of the Go Live 2050 is possibly the GPS bargain of the year. If not, there are better specified and better value sat nav units on the market.


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About The Author

CNET Editor

Derek loves nothing more than punching a remote location into a GPS, queuing up some music and heading out on a long drive, so it's a good thing he's in charge of CNET Australia's Car Tech channel.


Design

It may be thinner (19mm versus 21.7mm) than its cheaper resistive touchscreen brother, Go Live 825, but the Go Live 2050 looks and feels chunkier. The blame here falls squarely on the shoulders of the 2050's rounded bar-of-soap body. To liven up proceedings there's a bit of body jewellery in the form of a slab of a brushed metal appliqué on the rear. A narrow translucent power button sits along the top left-hand edge of the 2050 and glows orange or green, depending on the state of the battery, but it often takes a few attempts for the power button to register the intent of your prodding.

Unlike most other TomTom devices, the Go Live 2050 doesn't have a windshield suction cup that's built into the body of the device. Rather, the cup is part of the in-car charging cradle and features a set of magnets that not only hold the Go Live 2050 firmly in place, but also allows the unit to be snapped in and out. As a piece of design, it's pretty nifty and should please those who prefer to tap in a destination while having the device in their lap.

As compensation for the seemingly chubbier body, there's a glossy capacitive touchscreen that's multi-touch capable, although support for multi-touch gestures is limited to the menu system and the map overview screen. Unfortunately, the upgrade in screen technology is not accompanied by a bump in resolution — the Go Live 2050 features the same 480x272 resolution and jagged fonts seen on entry-level 4.3-inch units.

The glossy screen improves the unit's apparent brightness and contrast, but increases the amount of fiddling required, as sunrises, sunsets, light coloured interiors and sunroofs all cause annoying and distracting reflections. Compared with pedestrian TomTom units, which feature a built-in suction cup, the swivel mount on the Go Live 2050 is significantly stiffer, and unless you grasp both device and mount, there's a fair chance of detaching one from the other.

Features

There are two versions of the Go Live 2050 on sale, locally: a AU$399 version loaded with Whereis' map of Australia, and a AU$499 World edition that comes with complete map coverage for 35 nations, including Australia, New Zealand, western Europe, the United States and Canada. There's also partial coverage for seven countries, including Russia and Turkey, and connecting roads for a further seven countries in eastern Europe. If you're a regular traveller to and driver in the covered countries, the "world" version represents excellent value as overseas GPS maps will often set you back around AU$100, per country.

Bluetooth hands-free is standard and makes full use of the higher fidelity speaker fitted to the Go Live 2050. Voice recognition is present too, but its implementation and usefulness are rather limited. Compared to the excellent Garmin system in its 2012 range, the TomTom system isn't voice activated, instead requiring the user to tap an on-screen microphone button. Other constraints include its lack of on-screen guidance, inability to verbally choose from a list of options and a poor recognition rate — even on unchallenging names, the TomTom successfully guessed the meaning of our utterances less than 50 per cent of the time.

Performance

The Australian Whereis map features lane guidance for almost all multi-lane roads in capital cities and full screen junction view imagery for some major intersections, as well as highway and motorway exits. Street names are spoken aloud, but the TomTom often mispronounces titles that have an Aboriginal origin. To help smooth out any map errors, drivers can mark down and upload errors, such as incorrect speed limits, missing road restrictions and the like, as well as download crowd-sourced corrections from TomTom's MapShare service. Unfortunately, transferring MapShare data can't be done over-the-air, as it requires a PC or Mac with the MyTomTom applet installed.

When roaming around Australia, the Go Live 2050 has access to TomTom's suite of Live data services that include Google location searching, weather and, most importantly, TomTom's traffic information service, dubbed HD Traffic. Operating over the mobile phone network, TomTom Live is free to use for the first year and then AU$69.99 per annum, after that. We're not sure, though, that TomTom's traffic service is AU$70 a year better than the free-after-purchase Suna traffic messaging system that's included with most mid-range and higher Garmins and Navmans. While TomTom's HD Traffic claims to receive information updates twice as frequently (at two minute intervals) as Suna-equipped devices, on occasion, we still ran into traffic jams that had yet to appear on the system, while at other times, we were warned about delays that had already cleared.

Route calculation times are slower than on cheaper TomTom devices, primarily thanks to the unit having to consider data from the HD Traffic service. The routes, themselves, do nothing to distinguish itself from the throng — the Go Live 2050 will get you to your destination, but the route may fall well short of being the fastest or most logical.

Conclusion

If you're planning on travelling across Europe and North America and plan on driving, the 35-map World edition of the Go Live 2050 is possibly the GPS bargain of the year. If not, there are better specified and better value sat nav units on the market.



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jaccardi77
2
Rating
 

"Google maps on a smart phone is often quicker"

jaccardi77 posted a review   
Australia

The Good:it works

The Bad:everything els

I bought a Tom Tom 2050 Go Live in June 2012 thinking it was better than the others. I was wrong.

Extremely Laggy.

No home button means pressing back, cancel and done sometimes 7 or 8 times to get to home screen.

If I look for a local suburb in QLD that is in other states as well the furtherest one in TAS will be up top followed by Perth etc. and the logical nearest is at the bottom of the list, I have just been told a newer model has fixed this.

Live updates to avoid traffic jams works sometimes

Google maps on a smart phone is often quicker

Drivermann
3
Rating
 

"Don't buy a Tom Tom Go live 2050"

Drivermann posted a review   
Australia

The Good:When it worked it was easy to use

The Bad:Poor service from TOM TOM, doesn't update, no spare memory can't find GPS signal, doesn't pronounce street names correctly.

Terrible GPS. I bought a Tom Tom 2050 Go Live World map in 2012 prior to going to New York. Tom Tom had to replace the first unit as after only 6 weeks the battery would no longer hold a charge. I had to pay to return the unit to Sydney as Tom Tom would not cover the cost of returning the item to them even though it was under warranty.
The replacement unit worked okay for 3 months or so. However I could not get the unit to install updates. There is vertually no spare memory on the GPS, I installed a micro SD card, the unit still would not install updates.
The voice mispronnounced many street names.
Over the last few days the unit could not find a GPS signal. After it initially turned on, the message "searching for a valid GPS signal" would display on the screen. By turning the unit off, waiting a minute or two, turning the unit back on eventually it would find a GPS signal but would then intermitently loose the GPS signal.
Yesterday was the final straw. I drove home from work, some 40 minutes and never once could this piece of junk find a valid GPS signal.
Don't buy this GPS

WilliamS4 Facebook
2
Rating
 

"No More TomTom for me"

WilliamS4 posted a review   

The Good:big screen

The Bad:everything else

Will not buy a Tom-Tom again, got the 1050 and that failed in less than a year...then stupid me thought Id give the 2050 a try....at first had to deal with customer service as they at first would not give me the live products as I was suppose to get under a promotion at the time, After about two months of emailing every few days and sending copies of my receipts on several occasions, and promises of "we get it sorted out"
Eventually it was sorted out.....now one of the main reasons I got this was for the Google search....well they soon got rid of that and replaced it with something quite pathetic in its place, also half the time the live service don't even connect, the cradle on wind screen soon comes lose with no way of tightening it, oh and now the battery just dies...well after this.....think I will have to try Garmin

Roses
9
Rating
 

"Very Impressed"

Roses posted a review   
Australia

The Good:Ease of use, Live updates to avoid traffic jams

The Bad:Sometimes it has a few glitches and every now and then I have to shut it down to reboot it and it comes good again.... but worth this minor inconvenience!

I am absolutely loving this Tom Tom GPS since replacing my garbage Navman with it a few months ago. This is the best GPS I have ever owned!

JimW1 Facebook
1
Rating
 

"Not recommended"

JimW1 posted a review   

The Good:Sometimes works

The Bad:Extremely disappointing. In Australia it did not recognise speed limits that have been posted for years. In France it did not recognise main roads that have been there for years, pronunciation was garbled and incoherent, fixed speed cameras were missed,speed limits were often wrong, routes taken were often manic. No way were these recent maps, let alone up to date.Could only be used in cities and did not pick up onw way roads, let alone roadworks. Would not recommend to anyone.

Extremely disappointing. In Australia it did not recognise speed limits that have been posted for years. In France it did not recognise main roads that have been there for years, pronunciation was garbled and incoherent, fixed speed cameras were missed,speed limits were often wrong, routes taken were often manic. No way were these recent maps, let alone up to date.Could only be used in cities and did not pick up onw way roads, let alone roadworks. Would not recommend to anyone.

IanO Facebook
2
Rating
 

"a good reason not to buy a Tom Tom device or software."

IanO posted a review   

The Good:Large screen

The Bad:Screen very reflective, no latest map guarantee, misleading advertising, BS customer support from TT

I got the 2050 with the World maps for my birthday, and was quite happy with it's perforamnce on my first trip to Aussie a couple of weeks after getting it, the only complaint I had was the length of time taken to aquire the current location when first turned on and the glare from the screen, which made it hard to see.

While it came with the current maps, within the latest map guarantee period which is outlined in the limited documentation that came with the device, it says "download ANY new map version we issue within a 90 day period for FREE" The latest map versions came out a few weeks after I had connected it to the internet (still within the 90 day period) finding this out I connected the GPS and found that TOm Tom saidmy dvice was up to date. Yet it hadn't downloaded the latest maps.

I contacted customer support only to be told the following
[quote]
When the device was purchased on June 2012, the device came with the latest map v. 890.

Then later the current latest map v.895 was released on 27/08/2012 (August).

If the device had came with the old map version like v.850 when purchased, then you would have been able to download the latest map using the Latest Map Guarantee Service within 90 days from date of purchase.

Now, to receive further map updates you need to purchase Map Update Service for device.

TomTom Customer Support Team[quote/]

This has to be the biggest load of BS that I have been told by any customer service member.

The latest map guarantee states "download ANY new map version we issue within a 90 day period for FREE" so why don't Tom Tom honor what they state???

MichaelB11 Facebook
1
Rating
 

"Worthless if there's a problem"

MichaelB11 posted a review   

The Good:It worked for a while

The Bad:No spare parts available

Having owned the TomTom 2050 world for only a few months, I was disappointed when the screen got cracked on a plane flight. Dissapointment turned to disgust however when I discovered the company had no spare parts available and I could neither repair it myself nor get anyone else to repair it. The only solution, throw it away and pay for a new one.

This is a good reason to never buy from this company again!

PatK1 Facebook
10
Rating
 

"Good GPS"

PatK1 posted a review   

The Good:Everything

The Bad:Computer Connection

The best part of Go Live is that it's super quick and it teaches you how to avoid traffic delays as well as support Bluetooth connection.

DavidAussie
1
Rating
 

"thinks i will have a look at a GPS made by HN5i by Hema"

DavidAussie posted a review   
Australia

The Good:nice and shiny

The Bad:it does not work like it should

i purchased a tomtom go live 2050 series only had it out of the box for the day and after creating account and the trying to long in with the details provided in the email ?? why is the gps rebooting ?? then i click the google app first time the gps reboots again then next time i puts up a error message a the same with the weather app , i have had this it should work , i still has a tomtom 720 that works 99% of the time except when it gets alittle hot then it shuts down till it cools but lately it some times just restarts when iam driving but thats probaly related to the heat problem , so i returned the tomtom go live 2050 for a full refund

Gato
9
Rating
 

"Great car navigator: ideal in Oz and for self-drive international holidays"

Gato posted a review   
Australia

The Good:Accurate and fast in its coverage area; good "live" features

The Bad:Maps don't cover whole world; sat signal drops out in narrow streets

Just drove 2600km around Spain for 17 days in a hire car with our TomTom Go Live 2050 World/Australia. Whether navigating the excellent Spanish national expressway system, or the narrow streets of old Toledo, Córdoba, Sevilla, Gibraltar, Granada, Valencia, Barcelona or Madrid, the 2050 functioned with very high accuracy and speed. It really totally relieved us of the former delays and stresses of navigating in unknown places using paper maps.

We particularly like:
%u2022 the intuitive touch controls and easy setup for route planning;
%u2022 live wifi Google search functions that seem to work everywhere that has cellphone coverage; and
%u2022 ample advance warning by voice direction of upcoming turns.

Again and again we easily found specific addresses, or tourist sights, hotels, apartments, petrol outlets, restaurants and other destinations. Route planning was easy.

On several occasions where we took a wrong turn due to confusing signage or complicated cross-roads, the 2050 automatically, within seconds, accurately recalculated new routes to our preset destinations.

The TomTom Go Live 2050 World is not "perfect":
%u2022 It did not seem to have any live traffic information for Spain (this feature worked very well in Canberra);
%u2022 It seemed not to have fully up-to-date speed camera locations for Spain;
%u2022 The computer-generated voice direction (which we christened "Sybil") often made a hilarious mess of pronouncing place names (but text display on-screen was accurate);
%u2022 The GPS signal sometimes was slow, or dropped out for a few seconds, in narrow streets between even three or four storey buildings - delaying turn instructions. (The remedy was to pay more attention to visually matching street signs and mapped turns.)
%u2022 The windscreen suction mount included with the unit worked well but places the GPS out of touch distance on car models with steeply raked windscreens and deep dashboards. A dash mount might position the unit more conveniently on some vehicles.
%u2022 The 2050 is unlikely to be a good car navigation choice for people who do not regularly use computers and the Internet, because it relies on online updates. We took a few minutes each evening, when travelling, to plug the unit into a laptop with Internet connection to receive updates and send usage data to TomTom.
%u2022 Available maps don't cover the whole world. China, for example, is not yet covered.

We found that the minor quirks of the unit are amply compensated by great ease of use and highly accurate map, traffic direction and speed limit data.

We benefited from a couple of weeks familiarisation with the unit in Australia before we took it overseas, and recommend this to other users planning overseas travel.


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User Reviews / Comments  TomTom Go Live 2050

  • jaccardi77

    jaccardi77

    Rating2

    "I bought a Tom Tom 2050 Go Live in June 2012 thinking it was better than the others. I was wrong.

    Extremely Laggy.

    No home button means pressing back, cancel and done some..."

  • Drivermann

    Drivermann

    Rating3

    "Terrible GPS. I bought a Tom Tom 2050 Go Live World map in 2012 prior to going to New York. Tom Tom had to replace the first unit as after only 6 weeks the battery would no longer hold a charge. I ..."

  • WilliamS4

    WilliamS4

    Rating2

    "Will not buy a Tom-Tom again, got the 1050 and that failed in less than a year...then stupid me thought Id give the 2050 a try....at first had to deal with customer service as they at first would n..."

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