I was in both the Shack and a Verizon store before lunch today. They had quite a few "car-kits" in the range of $80-120-. None of them offered the complete tailored solution of the TomTom Car-kit. One that offered only BT was $120-.The kit is not "pricey."
Originally Posted by ticman
I grant you that the TomTom Software is short on features and it is "pricey." As a software only solution, I do not think that it is competitive with Navigon.
From the features and the design, I believe that the iPhone and the Navigon software will work with the car-kit. While there is a "control" for the car-kit in the TomTom software, currently it goes to a screen that lists the features and says, "coming soon." My guess is that there is at least a 50/50 chance that the TomTom Software bypasses the iPhone GPS and accesses its own via a proprietary interface when its own car-kit is present, rather than accessing it via the same interface. In that case, other software may co-exist with the TomTom GPS but not exploit it.
I have just reviewed the advertised features. My understanding, like yours, is that the car-kit enhances, with an external speaker and mic, the voice-side of the phone but does not help the cell-side (as it might with, for example, an external antenna).
I have two off-the-shelf, ad hoc, solutions to the display/charge problem. Both date back to my Treo, both work very well with my iPhone, both have been enhanced with a little after-market Velcro. The more robust of the two came from the Shack and stays in my car. The other is more primitive. I suspect that it came with something else and has been adapted to its current use. It stays in my briefcase and is used in rental cars. Both mount in portrait orientation and I am anxious to try landscape. I am very satisfied with both.
I now have six 12-volt sockets in my front seat. I use one to charge the iPhone, one to power the BT, one to power the FM transmitter for the iPhone, and one to power my satellite radio receiver. It is my hope that using the car-kit, I will only use one for the iPhone, BT, and FM. I hope to net down two.
All that said, in part because I cannot return my TomTom software, I plan to buy the car-kit as soon as it is available. Watch this space for a report.