Pros: Free and accurate traffic updates for life; Crisp touchscreen; Large POI database; Lane Assistant Pro feature
Cons: Randomly rerouted us once; Lacks features such as a media player
Verdict: The budget-friendly Navigon 2200T combines a good navigation experience with free lifetime traffic.
Navigon packs a lot into the 2200T. While it doesn't have such frills as a media player, it provides practical features such as lifetime free traffic updates, clear maps, and lane assistance. While this $229 GPS may be on the small side, the Navigon 2200T has the specs of a much larger device.
Design and Interface
The Navigon 2200T looks like the 2000S and has a similar 3.5-inch display, which seems small but was bright and crisp enough for viewing text. The touchscreen was sensitive to each press and was easy to interact with at all times. We liked that the suction cup was sturdy and had a small lever that, when pressed, helped tighten the 2200T's grip on our windshield.
The black colored main menu screen has five choices: New Destination, My Destinations, Take Me Home, and Show Map, as well as an Options button. You can use these to create a new trip or navigate to a spot you've previously designated as Home. If you select the Options button, you can check traffic updates, GPS status, activate your service, or customize settings for route profiles, navigation, and the map display.
When you're entering a destination, the unit will automatically begin to use its Smart Speller feature, which eliminates letters and starts auto-completing a city, street, or point-of-interest names so that you don't have to spend too much time tapping. You can choose to search for a point of interest, like a Dunkin Donuts or gas station, easily. We noticed that street pronunciation was off, though; when it tried to pronounce "Pequannock" it sounded more like "Puck Wah Nuk." Generally, we knew what the unit meant, but it could have been a little more accurate.
The Navigon 2200T has a database of approximately 2 million POIs, which is on the smaller side and was a little out of date; we noticed that a gas station that recently switched from a Shell to another provider was not noted on the map. However, you can subscribe to a quarterly map database called FreshMAPS for $79.99, which provides up to twelve map updates over three years by connecting the device to your computer.
We liked the Reality View Pro and Lane Assistant Pro features, which helped us navigate through tricky parts of a highway during a trip from New Jersey to Long Island. While looking for the Whitestone Bridge exit on the Cross Bronx Expressway, the GPS had us move to the right lane and showed us how the road would look up ahead, so that we could safely switch lanes ahead of time.
Maps and Navigation
We loved that the maps on the Navigon 2200T were colorful and always easily to follow. The unit provides an ETA, the amount of miles left in your trip, and any traffic conditions, directly on the map screen for at-a-glance viewing. We also appreciated that we could see small icons that represented points of interest along our route; this helped us locate a gas station coming up down the road without having to open another screen just to search for a place to fill up.
While it took about 3 minutes for the device to grab a GPS signal when we first turned it on, the Navigon 2200T mapped out our route from New Jersey to Long Island in about 20 seconds. At one point during our trip, just after the George Washington Bridge, the unit started telling us to turn left where there was nothing but a concrete wall. This happened during two bridge crossings. It quickly corrected itself after about 20 seconds, and we attribute this to a poor GPS signal, but it was still a bit confusing. When we took a wrong turn heading to a Dunkin' Donuts, the device began to recalculate almost immediately.
Unlike the $199 Navigon 2000S, the 2200T comes with free traffic updates for life. It very accurately reported our bumper-to-bumper conditions just before the George Washington Bridge, and was able to report more traffic up ahead in Long Island. In most cases, you could use this information to reroute, but we had to stick it out since our route was the only one possible.
For $229, the Navigon 2200T offered everything we could ask for in a value-price GPS device: accurate directions and a sharp and colorful screen. It reported traffic accurately, and we enjoyed the Lane Assistant Pro feature for getting through tough intersections and off of tricky exits. While it doesn't offer extras like a photo viewer or music and video players, those are extraneous. If you want a solid navigator that gets you from point A to point B in the fastest time possible, the Navigon 2200T is the best choice for the money.
|Size||3.8 x 2.9 x 0.7 inches|