Author Topic: TomTom gives its customers the finger  (Read 1682 times)

TomTom gives its customers the finger
« on: January 30, 2018, 08:43:09 am »
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/42859546

Neither of my devices are on the list but this is the action of a company that is probably going down.
Never tell me the odds.

Jaded

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  • Formerly known as Jaded
Re: TomTom gives its customers the finger
« Reply #1 on: January 30, 2018, 09:00:57 am »
Don’t see the point of standalone gps units for the car nowadays. The phone and an app are fine.
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Re: TomTom gives its customers the finger
« Reply #2 on: January 30, 2018, 09:25:24 am »
Not everybody has an up-to-date smartphone though and many many people bought satnavs with lifetime upgrades.

Re: TomTom gives its customers the finger
« Reply #3 on: January 30, 2018, 09:30:16 am »
Phone/app is a faff if you know you're going to somewhere with limited mobile coverage and need to download an offline version, otherwise it's great.

For the TomTom thing, this is the bait and switch they're using (from the article):-

"
On its website, TomTom explains that "lifetime" means the "useful life" of a device: "ie: the period of time TomTom supports your device with updates, services, content or accessories. A device will have reached the end of its life when none of these are available any more."
"

So they can sell something with "lifetime updates" then stop the updates 2 years later and claim that's what they meant.
"Yes please" said Squirrel "biscuits are our favourite things."

Jaded

  • The Codfather
  • Formerly known as Jaded
Re: TomTom gives its customers the finger
« Reply #4 on: January 30, 2018, 09:36:37 am »
It's why I said 'app' in my post.

The Google/Apple maps functions are not as good if they don't download routes
If you don't like your democracy, vote against it.

Re: TomTom gives its customers the finger
« Reply #5 on: January 30, 2018, 09:47:49 am »
There's this little sketch that runs in my head (yes, I know), where a bloke goes up to a service counter with a device that has a "Lifetime  Warranty". Service agent pokes it "Yep, that's dead now. End of warranty" and walks away.

Re: TomTom gives its customers the finger
« Reply #6 on: January 30, 2018, 09:49:47 am »
Lifetime has become twisted to mean whatever the tech giant* wants it to mean.  No doubt it was obfuscated rather well in 1pt print somewhere in the acres of terms and conditions only available on the website on a page which does not zoom for two minutes every February 29th.

Bloody lawyers!   :D

* Or whoever else wants to build redundancy into a product they sell so they can continue to sell new replacements in short order.

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: TomTom gives its customers the finger
« Reply #7 on: January 30, 2018, 01:19:55 pm »
We knew this was coming.  Most new vehicles have integrated satnavs, although it seems like bad UI or quirky routing decisions are compulsory.  Anyone who can afford a car can afford a smartphone[1], and there are a plethora of extremely competent navigation options (including TomTom) for those that make it hard to justify the cost of dedicated, less functional, more theft-prone, hardware.

Lifetime warranties for anything subject to Moore's Law were always a scam.  Sure, it's entirely possible to keep a crack team of dedicated beardy programmers maintaining software for ancient hardware, but at a cost that only makes economic sense if it's, say, a nuclear missile defence system, or the IBM/360 that your banking empire still depends on.

Hopefully TomTom will continue outside the consumer satnav market.  I've always liked their products.


[1] See EV charging rants passim.
To ride the Windcheetah, first, you must embrace the cantilever...

Re: TomTom gives its customers the finger
« Reply #8 on: January 30, 2018, 01:22:39 pm »
The problem is that some of these products were on sale in the last year  :o
Never tell me the odds.

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: TomTom gives its customers the finger
« Reply #9 on: January 30, 2018, 01:36:23 pm »
The problem is that some of these products were on sale in the last year  :o

They've obviously decided that since they're abandoning the consumer market, there's no point in cultivating good will by continuing to provide support for some reasonable period (even if it's just "we'll replace your old model with the current one" so they only have one thing to maintain).  It does seem to indicate they should have bailed earlier.
To ride the Windcheetah, first, you must embrace the cantilever...

Re: TomTom gives its customers the finger
« Reply #10 on: January 30, 2018, 02:01:59 pm »
I wasn't going to pay 500squid for incar satnav optional extra. So I have a Tomtom which I updated yesterday.  Earlier I'd had a Garmin without lifetime updates and IIRC the updates were rather expensive.

The customer is not supposed to win.
Sic transit and all that..

barakta

  • Bastard lovechild of Yomiko Readman and Johnny 5
Re: TomTom gives its customers the finger
« Reply #11 on: January 30, 2018, 02:03:20 pm »
The problem is that some of these products were on sale in the last year  :o

I'd complain under the Sale of Goods Act and probably be talking with whoever Trading Standards morphed into this 4 seconds if I'd bought it within the last 5 years.

My mum was considering reverting back to her TomTom cos her car inbuilt twatnav is not very good, it doesn't give sensible lane warnings and some of its instructions. I suspect Mum's won't be updated now... I'll have to check next visit home.

frankly frankie

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Re: TomTom gives its customers the finger
« Reply #12 on: January 30, 2018, 02:06:48 pm »
Who needs updates?  I've still got some nice cloth-based maps dating from the 1930s ...

Lifetime warranties for anything subject to Moore's Law were always a scam.

I bought a bike frame with a lifetime warranty.
That turned out to be a singularly useless thing to have when it broke in 2 six months later, in the middle of Switzerland.  What I needed was a working bike NOW, not a refund or a replacement in a month's time.  Actually, I threw it in a skip, took a train to the nearest sizeable town and bought a BSO (which has since turned out to be rather good). 1 touring day lost.
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Samuel D

Re: TomTom gives its customers the finger
« Reply #13 on: January 30, 2018, 02:08:26 pm »
When driving I still use a Garmin nüvi 255 from 2009 with maps dating from approximately the same era (I was allowed to update them for a few months after purchase). The maps still work well enough to be useful in France, although it is shocking how many roundabouts have been built in the last 9 years.

Many of these old TomToms will similarly work fine for their users for a few years. Besides, most owners probably never updated their maps while the possibility existed. With my Garmin, I was required to install some ghastly plug-in for one specific browser. The map update was something like 6 GB but had to be streamed onto the device over USB 1.1 as it downloaded. You get the picture.

SoreTween

  • Most of me survived the Pennine Bridleway.
Re: TomTom gives its customers the finger
« Reply #14 on: January 31, 2018, 06:08:59 pm »
Don’t see the point of standalone gps units for the car nowadays. The phone and an app are fine.
Provided you don't mind being tracked in every facet of your life, sure.  TomTom know about most places I go in my car, nothing else.

We knew this was coming.
Why?  I paid for the device which came with lifetime map updates, I'd certainly have bought it without those.  I pay for a yearly subscription for live traffic as that is the function I wanted, I can read a map and plan in advance just fine.  What I cannot do is know about changing traffic conditions and reroute while on the move so I bought and continue to pay for a gadget that can.  Why should I expect the finger from TomTom?  Just because it is normal these days?  At what point does expecting shitty behaviour become condoning shitty behaviour?

Many of these old TomToms will similarly work fine for their users for a few years. Besides, most owners probably never updated their maps while the possibility existed. With my Garmin, I was required to install some ghastly plug-in for one specific browser. The map update was something like 6 GB but had to be streamed onto the device over USB 1.1 as it downloaded. You get the picture.
The TomTom update process is similarly painful.  I suspect it is to try and keep prying eyes away from expensive map data. If the satnav were just a removable storage device you dropped a fresh data file onto it would be that much easier to hack and to move data files from one device to another.
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There is only one infinite resource in this universe; human stupidity.

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: TomTom gives its customers the finger
« Reply #15 on: January 31, 2018, 06:13:44 pm »
We knew this was coming.
Why?

Because if you can't make money selling car GPS navigation devices, you're going to stop making car GPS navigation devices.
To ride the Windcheetah, first, you must embrace the cantilever...

Jaded

  • The Codfather
  • Formerly known as Jaded
Re: TomTom gives its customers the finger
« Reply #16 on: January 31, 2018, 11:53:14 pm »
Don’t see the point of standalone gps units for the car nowadays. The phone and an app are fine.
Provided you don't mind being tracked in every facet of your life, sure.  TomTom know about most places I go in my car, nothing else.
So it seems you don’t have a mobile phone, and the question of having an app on it is moot.

I did say “app”, and pointed this out earlier in the thread. The app is on when I need GPS routing, otherwise it is off. Just like your TomTom. The app actuallly allows me to switch off live tracking. Which is nice, but if everyone did it there’d be no traffic information.
If you don't like your democracy, vote against it.

Re: TomTom gives its customers the finger
« Reply #17 on: February 01, 2018, 07:12:29 am »
I have a 2008 Garmin Zumo 550 on my motorbike and although I can still buy map updates from Garmin for it, I prefer to use free OSM maps. Does anyone know if you can do the same with TomToms? I shall have to look into that.
I am often asked, what does YOAV stand for? It stands for Yoav On A Velo

SoreTween

  • Most of me survived the Pennine Bridleway.
Re: TomTom gives its customers the finger
« Reply #18 on: February 01, 2018, 11:35:08 am »
Because if you can't make money selling car GPS navigation devices, you're going to stop making car GPS navigation devices.
I really don't see the connection between exiting a declining market and shitting on past customers.  They are using as excuse:
Quote from: TomTom
As an illustration, in 2010 a map for Europe was 1.6GB, and today it is 6.5GB.
Clearly there are not four times the number of roads there were 8 years ago.  They could have set up systems to spit out high resolution data for modern devices and low resolution data for older ones from the same dataset.  But that would cost money to do and they cannot recoup that money, their mistake it seems to me was giving free lifetime map updates.  They should have made them peppercorn cheap which would have allowed them to do what they needed with pricing later/now.

So it seems you don’t have a mobile phone, and the question of having an app on it is moot.

I did say “app”, and pointed this out earlier in the thread. The app is on when I need GPS routing, otherwise it is off. Just like your TomTom. The app actuallly allows me to switch off live tracking. Which is nice, but if everyone did it there’d be no traffic information.
Apologies Jaded, that came across wrong.  s/you/one/ etc.

I do have a smart phone it's a googly one but I do all I can to limit the data harvest.  Mostly that involves not having a google account, only using apps I can side load from f-droid, keeping data, WiFi & location off except when in use and keeping the bare minimum of personal data on it.  Still I'd wager if I were to set up a google account and log in to it even from a new clean phone google would already know a frightening amount about the owner of my phone number.  I would not be able to control data leak between a TomTom app and google, having the two on separate devices mostly achieves separation.  Google knows the owner of this phone number frequently uses a device that reports itself via bluetooth to be a TomTom.  That's all.  Of course they also know in broad brush strokes where I go due to cell locations but not the addresses I visit.  TomTom on the other hand know what model of phone I own and the phone numbers on it, data leak is pretty much unavoidable but I won't be blasé.

I'm not going to tell anyone how to behave with their personal data nor evangelise about keeping it secure, that's other peoples choice.  For me, I choose to do what I can to limit leakage and always consider the cost/benefit of any data I hand over.  I'm not sure what I shall do when my TomTom goes EOL, it won't be an app on my main phone simply because I would not be able to get the app without first having a google account.  Perhaps a second phone just for google dependant apps.

By the way, on my device if I switch off live tracking I don't get the benefit of live rerouting.  I accept live leakage of my location as the benefit is worth the cost.
2019 targets: TINAT 160 rough
There is only one infinite resource in this universe; human stupidity.

Jaded

  • The Codfather
  • Formerly known as Jaded
Re: TomTom gives its customers the finger
« Reply #19 on: February 01, 2018, 05:21:39 pm »
 :)

Yes, I don't like the data harvesting either, so I rarely use Apple Maps or Google Maps for location/routing. I've bought in to the CoPilot map-o-sphere, and like the way it gives me speed limits, and other stuff. I'd like it to automatically swap between km and miles, depending on which country I'm in, but that's a minor thing. When elsewhere I carry a car windscreen mount and a cigarette lighter USB and cable. In fact I'm using one just now..

But when I'm not using CoPilot it is off. For most of my apps Location Services are off. I don't want them to have my data unnecessarily.
If you don't like your democracy, vote against it.