Review: TomTom Sport Watch
TomTom, the good folks who’ve been helping us directionally challenge people get around with their wondrous technology the last few years have come out with a sport watch. Since a lot of the current GPS sport watches on the market use TomTom technology, it was only a matter of time until they released their own. I’ve been putting it through its paces (HA! Geddit?! Ahh run jokes are the best) for the past couple of weeks and thought I’d share my thoughts.
My overall impression is that it’s alllllllllright. Not great, not mind blowing, it’s not reinventing the wheel, but it does what it needs to do.
One of my main issues with it is the basic screen. You can have three variables displayed on the screen (I opt for pace, time elapsed and distance). One of those is displayed large in the centre and the other two are beside each other at the top of the screen. Personally I found the two smaller variables a bit too small so I couldn’t read them when I looked at the watch. That’s a little frustrating when you just want your stats quickly as you glance at the watch mid-run.
The other thing I found a little frustrating was that it didn’t pick up a GPS signal as quickly as I thought it would, given that it’s a TomTom watch. My Nike GPS sportwatch always picked up a signal first. Often the TomTom watch wouldn’t pick one up until about 0.3 of a mile into the run.
One of the features they seem to be touting as a big selling point is a ‘one-button control’. I’d say this is slightly deceptive to say the least. There is what looks like a square button, but pressing the centre of it does nothing. However, each side of that square is a button in itself and serves a function to take you through various menus. Therefore, I mean, paint that whichever way you want for marketing purposes, but I’d say that’s four buttons my friends! It’s all a bit finicky.
There are some decent features that can add a little something extra to your training sessions. There’s a ‘Race Yourself’ option where you can preset a time/distance combination, similar to the virtual pacer on some Garmin models. You can also set a ‘Goal’ be it time, distance or a calorie goal and a large simple graphic on the screen shows you how close you are to the goal percentage wise, alerting you at 50%, 90% and 100%. There’s also a ‘Pace Yourself’ feature that lets you set a pace or heart rate target – if your real-time performance falls out of your target zone, the watch alerts you. Personally, the watch never seemed to pick up my heart rate, which worryingly, means I’m possibly dead while I’m running? (Quite likely).
All in all, it’s allllllright, but it won’t make me switch from my Nike GPS sport watch. Also, I really do wish that brands would get the message that just because it’s for women, you don’t have to make it PINK.