Gadgets

TomTom VIA 1535TM

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The $249.95 TomTom VIA 1535TM is a portable GPS device that actively takes you on a well-calculated trip. In the world of mid-range portable navigation devices, the TomTom VIA 1535TM does its best to provide the necessary directions efficiently and smoothly.

When first unpacking the GPS, users are usually attracted to that super thin brushed-aluminum surface. The screen is almost perfectly in line with the body of the machine, giving it a high class feel. With the EasyPort mount, which attaches the device to anywhere in the car, the TomTom VIA 1535TM measures 3.1×4.7×1.0 inches. All in all, the device weighs 6.5 ounces, but as long as its mount keeps it secure, the weight might not be a big priority.

The 5-inch plastic LCD screen is tough. It boasts 480×272 pixel resolution and a 16:9 widescreen aspect ratio. The image is crisp, and the brightness somewhat average, but workable.

The images that the TomTom uses are a step up from older models. An intelligent decision to add more, varied textures, and smarter color themes in the day and night modes of the TomTom VIA 1535TM have improved the basic display. The interface is somewhat sloppy, but the in-action graphics are good, especially the nice large font at the bottom of the screen, which are legible at a quick glance.

The process to input a destination is simple, albeit after tapping the screen an annoying amount of times, as it sometimes doesn’t pick up the contact. The type-ahead feature, which is a common feature you see in updated search engine browsers, attempts to predict your destination, saving you the energy of inputting the whole address.

All features and options can be custom configured to tweak the functionality of the device however the user feels. If the automobile lacks it, there’s a Bluetooth hands-free mode. Users can store useful maps on the 2 gigabyte memory that comes with the device. However, although the price might indicate a healthy amount of features, the TomTom VIA 1535TM lacks in that regard. Though, the free lifetime ad-less traffic updates make up for that.

As for the functionality of the device in use, there is little to complain about. The screen displays the speed limit, your speed, the distance remaining to the destination and the distance remaining to the next turn. The screen jumps to 3D mode to better illustrate more intricate exits or highway ramps. Once arriving, the device informs of what side of the road the destination is on.

The audio cues are clear and smooth, and one can tell that developers closely considered how to time responses. The routes the device chooses are sometimes longer in distance but shorter in time, attesting to the company’s IQ Route’s ability to have correctly compared estimated times with subscribers’ actual data.

The only other complaint is that Points of Interest should be better categorized. Otherwise, this device offers a decent service at a manageable cost.

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