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TOMTOM Start 60 review

Our Rating :
Price when reviewed : £140
inc VAT

The Start 60 is a colourful and helpful satnav system, but it has a slow, jerky interface


Display: 6in touchscreen, Resolution: 800×480, Battery life: Up to 2 hours autonomous operation, Card slot: microSD, Mount: EasyPort Mount, Weight: 300g

The TomTom Start 60 is a satnav device with a 6in resistive touchscreen, free map updates for the lifetime of your Start 60 and clear lane guidance that helps you remain in the correct lane when travelling on motorways and dual carriageways. We’ve reviewed the Start 60, which has a 6in screen, but the TomTom Start is also available with a 4in or 5in screen.

The Start 60 is easy to set up physically, as it comes with a USB cable and a car lighter adaptor so that you can power the device without tying up your car’s USB port, assuming it has one. The Start 60 is mounted to your car using a suction pad that can be locked in place securely, and is connected to its mount via a ball joint. This means the Start 60 can be posed in a variety of positions, which is handy because the screen has terrible viewing angles.

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However, the screen is colourful with well-defined icons, which makes understanding the onscreen information easy to digest at a glance. The Start 60’s large screen is dominated by the map. At the right-hand side of the screen is a linear, top-to-bottom strip that shows points of interest on the route, such as petrol stations and speed cameras, as well as their positions relative to your position. You can switch between a 2D birds-eye view and a 3D view with the press of an onscreen button, and zoom in or out to suit your needs.

You access the Start 60’s many options by scrolling through a series of icons horizontally, and finding your destination is as simple as pressing search and typing in a post code, a street name or the name of a business, such as a hotel or restaurant. The Start 60 searches for your destination as you type, listing addresses on one side and places of interest on the right. The Start 60 makes it incredibly easy to find a destination when you only have a partial address, or know the post code and don’t want the hassle of also entering the street name, and so on.

There’s even a top-level option in the menu for finding a car park near your destination, or even along your route, which is invaluable when you’re visiting an unfamiliar town or city. You can also create an easily accessible list of your favourite destinations, which is handy for storing your home post code so that you don’t have to keep entering it when you’ve been somewhere new and don’t know how to get back. You can set default route options too, so you can choose to take the shortest route or avoid motorways, to give just two options.

We had no trouble following the Start 60’s instructions, and the only place where it became confused was when giving us instructions on the Coventry ring road which, to be fair, is the work of the devil and currently undergoing heavy maintenance. The motorway lane guidance is a real boon on unfamiliar motorways with many lanes and multiple filters, as it tells you which lane you should be in with an unambiguous graphic. The Start 60 comes with a variety of different voices, although the default voice is clear and easy to follow.

We really like the way you interact with the Start 60’s interface and search for addresses or places of interest. We also like the look of the map, so it’s a shame that the Start 60’s interface is sluggish and jerky. It can take a moment or two for something to happen once you’ve pressed a button, and we sometimes ended up pressing the wrong icon because the interface was trying to catch up with our commands. The Start 60 is calculates and recalculates routes in a decent time, though, and while the interface’s slow response is annoying we can live with it given the Start 60’s wealth of convenient options.

If you’re looking for a great-value satnav that’s easy to use and can provide you with plenty of information, such as the location of petrol stations, hotels and car parks, then you should buy the TomTom Start 60. However, you will need to be a little patient with it.

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