Review: TomTom GO60

By: Dave Lorimar

Review: TomTom GO60 Review: TomTom GO60
Review: TomTom GO60 Review: TomTom GO60
Review: TomTom GO60 The twist-and-lock suction cup works very well. Review: TomTom GO60

A few issues back we tested the TomTom GO600 and said at the time that it was the best GPS unit we'd tested to date. Well, that's still the case – but the TomTom GO60 is its baby brother and sure does pack a punch all of its own.

Having almost the same features as the fantastic GO600 unit, the GO60 is great for those on a budget who don't want or need those extra top-of-the-line features.

In saying that, the GO60 still shares many of the advanced features and the user interface that makes the GO600 so good.

The first big difference impacts on how you interact with the GPS unit though: the pinch to zoom feature is missing. Now some people will be horrified with this (especially people that are used to tablets and smartphones with touchscreens).

On those other devices, the pinch to zoom movement is something you do without even thinking about it: it has become second nature, like a subconscious action of the body. You'll know if you're that type when you instinctively pinch to zoom devices that you already know this doesn't work on. I'm guilty of this.

However, the simple plus and minus buttons are back on the screen and with a couple of taps you can pretty much achieve the same results. It's up to you whether this is a biggie or not, but it's really nice the TomTom has given the purchaser the option of deciding whether to spend a bit more cash to opt for this feature or not bother. The tap-to-go feature is still there too, which is great: that's a big tick.

Another difference? The magnetic mount found on the GO500/600 series is missing from these units. Instead the GO60 unit mounts using a somewhat conventional method: a plastic stick inserts into the unit and, using this, it's hung from a twist-to-lock suction cup. It works fine though.

I feel this type of mount best suits someone who leaves their GPS continuously mounted on the windscreen. However, if you are always hiding your GPS when you park your vehicle, then the magnetic mount option on the GO600 is, in my opinion, the better choice for you.

The unit I tested came with some Kiwi accents under the English language option. Everything was "sweet as" and "cheers bro". It was a great fun to hear the Kiwi slang dropped into the occasional alert or message and I understand that all the TomTom GO40, 50 and 60 models now come with the Kiwi accents feature.

Searching for an address has been made easier too. Now you don't need to know exactly what region your destination address is in: just start typing the street name and the unit will search its entire database for any possible match, be it a business or physical address. Too easy.

Tom Tom _GO60_4

Free lifetime maps and TomTom traffic are included with the unit. All traffic data is accessed via your smartphone using Bluetooth. You have to have a data plan and have data roaming turned on. Under normal driving conditions, it's estimated to use about 7MB of data per month. Note that you'll also need to set up a free account with TomTom on your computer to use this feature and get software updates.

Just like its big brother, the GO60 has a widescreen view. Every pixel of the screen is utilised to provide the user with an enriching experience, with floating layers and pop-up boxes that are semi-transparent, enabling the user to still see the map below. The map seems bigger as a result, which is nice.

The new route bar provides all the essential route information in one place. A summary of the next 50km of your journey is displayed along with ETAs and distance-to-go data. Again, this info is semi-transparent so you can still see the map behind it. Combined with the full screen map, these features work well together.

Once you enter a city, the map will start to show 3D buildings that have a similar design and shape to the real thing. The buildings are set slightly back from the roads to provide a clearer view of the roads themselves, enabling the user to easily find hidden lanes that are often found behind large buildings.

The unit does run a little slow, but with the way the user interface works, it's not that noticeable. It does however seem to halt input while it's delivering an audio message. For example, I arrived home and the "Welcome home, cheers for the ride" speech started as I pressed the home screen button. The unit paused until the speech had finished, then it recognised that the home button had been pressed and continued on.

The verdict

If you're on a budget or aren't too worried about some of the missing features from the GO600, then the GO60 is an excellent GPS to purchase. It's fantastic value considering it functions pretty much the same as the GO600, but for a cheaper price.

TomTom GO50 5-inch RRP $269

TomTom GO60 6-inch RRP $329

Thumbs up

  • Nice bright 6-inch screen
  • Great user interface experience
  • Lifetime traffic updates and lifetime map updates
  • Accepts external memory cards

Thumbs down

  • You need a smartphone with a data plan to get the traffic updates
  • Doesn't work in the vertical orientation; horizontal only

For the latest news and reviews, subscribe to Deals On Wheels magazine here.

Keep up to date in the industry by signing up to Deals on Wheels' free newsletter or liking us on Facebook