For my birthday, Ryan bought me a TomTom, a portable GPS navigator system for my car. It’s superfun, and the fact that you can remove it from your car means that if a friend is trying to follow you, you can just give it to them and enter your destination. And, even if you sort of know how to get to your friend’s house way up in the twisty streets of the Berkeley hills, you can turn on your little sidekick, and get some reassurance. Love that.
Real Life Use Case #1: We asked my mom (who does not live near here) to drop us at the Greek Theater in Berkeley and then drive Julian home and put him to bed. Ryan drove the car up there, and then hopped out, set the TomTom to navigate her back to our house, and sent her on her way.
The TomTom shows you an image of the streets you’re on, and after you input your destination, guides you there with a map and audio alerts. Since I love to know how to answer “are we there yet?” I am constantly checking the countdowns on the display to see how many miles are left, how many minutes are left, and what time we are expected to arrive.
Real Life Use Case #2: Scarlett is screaming her head off in the car. I don’t know what to say and cannot think beyond counting down the seconds until we arrive. I glance at the TomTom every few seconds and tell her, “Only 3.8 miles left, Scarlett!”, “We’ll be there in 2 minutes and 55 seconds.” “Please please please stop screaming for the next 75 yards and then we’ll have reached our destination.”
The other cool thing is the POI or Points of Interest database that’s built in. You can navigate to the nearest Zoo, Post Office, or Starbucks.
Real Life Use Case #3: Driving from LA to Berkeley, a six hour journey of which four hours are on a very dull, remote highway, I was able to search for nearest gas stations and be reassured that we were just miles from the next gas station, not minutes from becoming stranded with two tiny children in 115 degree heat in central California.
Best birthday present ever? I think so. Check out the TomTom ONE Portable GPS Vehicle Navigation System on Amazon.com.