Widgets Gear Review: The Motorola Motonav TN555 - A Round-the-World Travel Blog: Devil May Care

Gear Review: The Motorola Motonav TN555

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I wrote a full review of this device at Amazon, but figured I would post the short version here. We purchased this GPS for the road trip largely because it offered a broad feature set for $99. After a month of intensive use, I'd recommend against buying a Motorola GPS because:

  • The user interface is clunky, attempting to guess the address you are searching for in a manner similar to Google's auto-suggestion feature. Unfortunately, the processor is nowhere near powerful enough to support these operations, so entering an address is a painful process.
  • The unit overheats easily if mounted on a dashboard, rendering it useless much of the day (or requiring us to turn the AC on full blast and pump it out of the front defogger vents). One would have thought that this was a basic feature for a GPS. (That said, while parked at the U.S./Canada border, we passed one couple who had solved this problem with a similar model by putting a towel over the unit, making it look like Lawrence of Arabia.)
  • The power adapter broke in Canada, and we had a ridiculous time trying to contact customer service to get a replacement.
  • The bluetooth connection (one of the high-end features one doesn't expect on a unit this cheap) is finicky, to say the least, and did not play well with an iPhone.

Bottom line: I would steer clear of Motorola products in this segment.

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