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PREVIEW COMMENTS: TOMTOM NAV2 USA
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Dave
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 14, 2003 8:04 am    Post subject: PREVIEW COMMENTS: TOMTOM NAV2 USA Reply with quote

Oooh, lots of comments and I missed 'em all!



Cessquill, I could tell you what I know, but I'd probably have to shoot you, or shoot myself. Hopefully that will explain it! I don't have anything definite, but read between the lines . Ah, no lines here



freeway680, TomTom never do show road names in Navigator view. It's a shame, and it's something I'd like to see, I think it might have something to do with the speed of the Navigator screen and how quickly they rotate the map. Perhaps it may not be so quick if road names were displayed and rendered at each pixel turn ? We have a copy of Routis in and we will be reviewing soon!



I'll see how Lutz is getting on with the USA version of TTN2, he's been beta testing it since day one, and I haven't heard too many issues about routing algorithms choosing the wrong locations. Certainly TTN2 here in the UK and Europe chooses more of a major route, but if it finds a more direct route across town on a slower road, it will take it. Maybe this is happening more in the US, where road networks are constructed differently than in Europe ? What would you prefer, to be routed along major routes, if it takes you out of your way several miles, or a more direct smaller route ?

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ikesler
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 14, 2003 8:04 am    Post subject: PREVIEW COMMENTS: TOMTOM NAV2 USA Reply with quote

Thanks..... I will try that.

The only thing on my Ipaq is TT and Live...... so the ram should not be an issue...... it has 64.

But I will try the defrag and see if that helps!


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lbendlin
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 14, 2003 8:04 am    Post subject: PREVIEW COMMENTS: TOMTOM NAV2 USA Reply with quote

Calculation freezing is never happening to me. Make sure you have plenty of RAM free, and also defragment your storage card from time to time. That helps in most cases.
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ikesler
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 14, 2003 8:04 am    Post subject: PREVIEW COMMENTS: TOMTOM NAV2 USA Reply with quote

Good points!

And yes that routing bug is annoying!

The calculation 'freezing' bug is also killing me! I have to reset my device all the time because of routing freezes when it is calculating and the only way out is a soft reset. Frustrating!
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lbendlin
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 14, 2003 8:04 am    Post subject: PREVIEW COMMENTS: TOMTOM NAV2 USA Reply with quote

All,



there are two things you may want to consider



a) The TeleAtlas does have the street type speed data, as does the Navtech data. However, this data is average, and it does not match individual driving preferences or take into account current local road conditions. The only program that can currently do that is Mapopolis with their ClearRoute service. Neither TomTom nor Routis have an idea of how much the average speed depends on the time of day, the time of year, and - most important but always ignored - the number of stop signs or traffic lights en route! One feature that I have always wanted was not "shortest" or "fastest" route but "laziest" route - the one that requires the least stops and turns...



b) Having said that I still believe that many of the issues mentioned above can be cured in TomTom by personalizing the average speeds for the road types. If you want the grid to be handled equally with the highways then just set their speed levels to be the same. If you want to avoid the highways, set the rout calculation to shortest. The only REAL issue is the TomTom Recalculate Bug (TRB ;-) that sets the calculation mode back to fastest.



Lutz
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hollis_f
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Joined: 11/10/2002 06:31:24
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 14, 2003 8:04 am    Post subject: PREVIEW COMMENTS: TOMTOM NAV2 USA Reply with quote

I often find that TTN2 will offer me a route that is substantially longer in distance than the route I would otherwise have taken. If I force it to use an alternative route (by telling it to avoide certain roads) I find that the estimated travel time is often just slightly longer than the original route.



It would make sense if the planning routine could be given a user defined bias for optimising distance or time. So I could choose a value of 110% - which would make it select a route that would take up to 10% longer if it was a shorter distance than the fastest route.
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ikesler
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 14, 2003 8:04 am    Post subject: PREVIEW COMMENTS: TOMTOM NAV2 USA Reply with quote

Here is an email response I got from TT re: routing.... as well as street names in Navigator view.



Dear Ian,

Dear Ian,

Thanks for your mail. An update has been released that deals with some of the application stability issues you describe. The link below should take you right to the page listing the downloads for this update. Download and install both the application and GPS update. http://www.tomtom.com/support/ce/support/download_navigator2.php?Language=1



Routing...

One thing to suggest, Routing wise, is that choosing Shortest route rather than Quickest route can help limit tendency to use highways. Route planning solutions of most flavors do see the world as if you are the only car on the road. Unlike us humans, they have little perception of actual traffic conditions, road works, shortcuts around traffic spots or popular rat runs. It sees a highway that is an empty road ahead with a designated speed of 65 mph. Our development team is continually challenging the routing technology in Navigator and sometimes it accuracy can be limited by discrepancies in map data. For map quality issues we have set up a reporting program where people can report issues directly back to TeleAtlas. For news on the map discrepancy reporting program see www.tomtom.com



With regard to your feature requests, these two ideas are popular suggestions and our Product management team do acknowledge them. We'll have to see what they come up with in the future.



Regards,

TomTom Customer Services

support@tomtom.com

http://www.tomtom.com



*** Please leave the ticket identifier in the subject of your reply ***





Now of course I already donloaded the updates.....so it must be a canned response!
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gman
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 14, 2003 8:04 am    Post subject: PREVIEW COMMENTS: TOMTOM NAV2 USA Reply with quote

Quote: Indeed, my experience of alternative routes is that they often take you some distance out of your way to take you to and from a major road (A road or motorway in the UK). Maybe this is related to the problems people are finding with the American version. I wonder if, irrespective of your configured speeds, the current routing algorithm is too weighted towards the use of major roads.

David






Yes, David, this is exactly the same problem we're having in the States. This is to be expected as we're using the same software, just with some differences in language as relates to the map database. I believe you're correct, the routing algorithm is most definitely too weighted towards major highways. This seems to be more of a problem here in the states due to the way most of our cities are laid out.
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Dave
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 14, 2003 8:04 am    Post subject: PREVIEW COMMENTS: TOMTOM NAV2 USA Reply with quote

Quote: Originally posted by ikesler on 11July2003

No street names when navigating is annoying also.... in 3D or 2D view that would be a nice thing to have, but my co-pilot LIVE doesn't have it either.




TBH, street names really isn't a requirement, more of a wish list. Providing you've plotted your journey to the road you're driving to, then although it would be nice to see road names, there isn't really any need providing that TomTom Navigator 2 routes you to the destination. Sometimes it's nice to know the roads you're driving past though.



You can plot a journey and then switch to Map view, and follow the journey that way, and you will get street names.
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Fuego
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 14, 2003 8:04 am    Post subject: PREVIEW COMMENTS: TOMTOM NAV2 USA Reply with quote

As a UK TTN2 user I actually agree, to an extent, with the current diagnosis that our US cousins are presenting.



I tend to take more back-roads than main roads, and often the journey is longer, but always it is quicker.



That maybe because I frequently get routed onto the evils that are known as the M25, M4, M1, and North Circular, or it maybe that road speeds are also not ideally set - I don't know.



I do know that any of those above mentioned roads, in rush-hour, are hell on earth.



What TTN2 really needs is a way of changing between routing profiles quickly, either to allow for changes in peak hours, or for personal preferences.



In addition, what it could really benefit from is a learning ability that creates a "learned profile", over time, which more accurately represents the road speeds that we achieve, for given times of the day, over specific road types.



In the meantime, whilst we are all awaiting that, and for better routing algorithms, I suggest that it would be an interesting exercise to compare road types and expected speeds between TTN2 and other competing products, in a particular country.

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Dave
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 14, 2003 8:04 am    Post subject: PREVIEW COMMENTS: TOMTOM NAV2 USA Reply with quote

It could be that it's primarily designed for Europe, or it could be your perception. A few years ago I would do anything possible to be routed via a manual map onto major roads, and if I deviated and took the wrong turn, I'd so the most stupid of things to get back to that original major road. Now with GPS, I'd much prefer being routed through a town centre if I knew it was going to cut 10 mins from my journey, and that's how TomTom works for Europe. It really depends on your perception and other's perceptions. I think we should be looking in the near future of having profiles configurable. When you start the journey you're asked do you only want to stick to major routes, or do you want to take the smallest of road to get to your destination quicker.



TomTom is obviously very new for the US, and if the general perception in the US is to get you to the destination not using major routes, then this needs to be communicated to TomTom, and I'm sure they'll fix the routing algorithms depending on which language setup is configured.
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gman
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 14, 2003 8:04 am    Post subject: PREVIEW COMMENTS: TOMTOM NAV2 USA Reply with quote

IMO, a good navigation program should try to give you the best, most direct route to your destination, but the fastest route should always take priority - even if it adds a few xtra miles. The problem with TomTom (at least here in the states) is that it seems to be trying to hard to route you onto the biggest major artery through a city. There may be many nearby roads that are main thoroughfares, not major arteries, that are actually better choices for a given route, but TomTom is ignoring them.



When comparing the exact same routes that I travel frequently, TomTom always seems to do this stubborn routine of only routing on major arteries, whereas other programs (Routis, Mapopolis) are much better at using smaller thoroughfares that end up giving the best route.



Perhaps this does have something to do with the program originally being designed for European cities and highways. Here in the US, our cities are generally much more 'gridlike'. By this I mean that, most cities have been planned in fairly symmetrical square grids. From what I remember of my travels in Europe, many of the city streets and highways are not laid out in such a deliberate symmetrical way.
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Dave
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 14, 2003 8:04 am    Post subject: PREVIEW COMMENTS: TOMTOM NAV2 USA Reply with quote

We have now released preview screenshots of TomTom Navigator 2 USA. This really is for all you USA users out there!



TomTom have for several weeks been conducting a Selective Public Beta in America of TomTom Navigator 2 with maps provided by TeleAtlas. Although we couldn't bring you any of the inside information at the time of the tests due to restrictions and NDA's we can now show you some great screenshots of TomTom Navigator 2 USA since TomTom have officially announced entering the American market and commenced shipping.



The full preview can be read here
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gman
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 14, 2003 8:04 am    Post subject: PREVIEW COMMENTS: TOMTOM NAV2 USA Reply with quote

I have also been using TomTom USA for a few days now. I have had the same experience as freeway680 and ikesler. Routing here in the states is, in a word, BAD.



I have yet to have the software calculate a route that is what I would consider acceptable, let alone 'optimal'. Having used 4 different navigation programs, it seems there is a major flaw with the routing engine/algorithms that TomTom uses. Perhaps part of the problem has to do with Teleatlas' US data, I'm not sure.



Using the alternate route function only created longer routes both in time and distance. Using 'Strict' calculation mode did not alter the results either.



The Intellinav programs (Routis/iGuidance) have it all over TomTom here in the states, because their routing works properly. Mapopolis routes properly as well.



TomTom has a very nice, fluid program w/nice graphics and operation, but the most important part of the program - the navigation - is severely flawed. I hope that TomTom works to correct the problem, but I won't hold my breath.



If you check the forums at gpspassion.com, you'll see that many US TomTom users are not at all happy with the software. Routis and Mapopolis are not as pretty as TomTom, but they do what they're supposed do - properly route you from point A to point B.
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nicknick
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 14, 2003 8:04 am    Post subject: PREVIEW COMMENTS: TOMTOM NAV2 USA Reply with quote

If you are ignoring 75% of routes then you probably do need to edit the speed settings of the different road types (and some times the name can be a bit strange - in the UK the TTN 'International Road' is equivalent to our Dual Carriageway)




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