CHOICE membership

TomTom using 2G network in Australia


#1

Received this from Tom Tom recently, I purchased the unit not that long ago on one of their promotions and there was nothing to indicate that it had soon to be out of date technology in it. Don’t know why they cant take these back and update the sim? instead they expect you to buy another unit.
very unfair I would say.
thanks

("You may already be aware that the 2G network in Australia will shut down from 30 April 2018. Unfortunately, our network operator decided to decommission the 2G network, with plans to use the bandwidth to increase performance on its 4G network and, in the future, for 5G.

Your TomTom GO5100/6100 will continue to operate, but will stop receiving Live Traffic and TomTom Mobile SpeedCams information via the built-in SIM card.

We’d like to apologise for the inconvenience and to offer you a voucher code for 50% off any product on the TomTom Australian webstore. Do check out the Terms and Conditions applicable to this offer below.)

If you choose another TomTom GO, you’ll be receiving Live Services by connecting it to your smartphone via Bluetooth."


#2

Depending on how long ago, I’d return it for a refund. Claims to perform a function->doesn’t perform said function.


#3

Assume that live traffic information is not key functionality…

Can maps be updated using other methods, such uploading updated maps from a PC connection, or is the TomTom limited to only 2G networks for updating?


#4

I second @draughtrider. Under the ACL if you knew this you probably would not have purchased it. They can upgrade it or refund in full as I see it.

If you don’t get a refund from the retailer/source of supply, go with a formal letter of demand, details of how have often been referenced on the .community. Search for it using the .community search function or go to accc.gov.au.

Re when you purchased it, if Tomtom was selling it after the closure of the 2G networks was announced I think the case could be made for misrepresentation or worse.

Let us know how it goes.


#5

Before jumping down the ACL path, a couple of questions need to be resolved to determine if TomTom (their service provider’s which I assume is Vodaphone as they coincidentally are turning off their 2G network on 30 April 2018) closure of the 2G network is reasonable and that you have been left in the lurch…

The first is when did you purchase the GO5100/6100 TomTom…as the model runs from the 2G network amd it has been reported in the mass media that the 2G networks had a finite life?

Was the GO5100/6100 TomTom purchased before or after the 30 September 2016?

If the GO5100/6100 TomTom was purchased before the 30 September 2016, no-one (inc. TomTom) would have envisaged the closure of the 2G network on the 30 April 2018. In such case, TomTom may not be responsible under the ACL.

However, if the GO5100/6100 TomTom was purchased after the 30 September 2016, then on purchase of the GO5100/6100 TomTom, you should have been advised that the 2G traffic and speeed camera functions will not longer work after either 30 September 2017 or 30 April 2018 (depending on when you purchased and the information known at this time. If you were not advised on purchase, they you would have good grounds to request resolution under the ACL as the TomTom was not fit for purpose and you expected, based on the information at the point of sale, that the TomTom would have a life of greater than maximum of 19 months.

If you were advised at the point of sale of the imminent shutdown of the 2G network (or possibly new of this from reading mass media), then arguing resolution under the ACL may be problematic, as you were aware of the limited duration that the 2G functionality would exist and accepted this on purchase of the GO5100/6100 TomTom.

(Note: Vodaphone originally announced the shutdown of their 2G network on 30 September 2016 - the original shutdown date was 30 September 2017, but this was extended out to 30 April 2018).

Do all other (non-2G) functions of the GO5100/6100 TomTom operate as required/in accordance with the manufacturer’s specifications?

If they do, then it will be difficult to argue, especially if you were aware of the 2G shutdown on purchase, that the GO5100/6100 TomTom was not fit for purpose or had a quality issue.

If the TomTom is several years old (say bought 3+ years ago), it would be seen reasonable that the device’s life has ceased for the 2G functionality. I expect that based on changes to technology and also ability for smartphones to also present similar traffic and speed camera information through apps, that this part of the TomTom may be nearing the point of redundancy. While I hate to see any technology redundancies, unfortunately it is a fact of life in the age we live.

Possibly the 50% off offer is reasonable for those who rely on TomToms to perform live traffic and speed camera functions. I expect however, if you have a smartphone, free/paid apps will be a lot cheaper than what TomTom is offering.

Choice has done recent reviews of mapping apps and there are also several forum thread which also discuss these apps.


#6

a PS to @phbriggs2000 comments, many of the new in-car navigation features now depend on bluetooth links to a smartphone! It appears they replicate the phone screen on the vehicle screen via an app.


#7

I’d expect that as a consumer I shouldn’t have to separately know of external events when purchasing products from a supplier who has third party agreements to support their functionality. Even attempting to educate a consumer by including wording such as “relies on xxx network”, “subject to 2g shutdown” or similar I think is a bit dodgy of the supplier - I shouldn’t need to be able to stitch together dependencies and understand the implications (I could personally, but I imagine my thousand year old mother trying to buy one and grok the details as a worst case scenario). The promotional material should be clear and crisp about what to expect, and the time-frames in which to expect it - “‘Feature A’ will cease to work after 1 April 2020” - and no conflicting ‘lifetime’ statements …

Age of unit is definitely a factor - and we run into that whole ‘what is a lifetime’ question again …

I’m just glad I live in a place where there is essentially no traffic :slight_smile:


#8

Thanks for the updates,

I received an Email to replace my 6 year old TomTom on the 28/11/2016, basically saying as the unit was getting on and I could purchase a new unit at a discounted price, with “Lifetime Camera Updates”, not sure of the definition of (lifetime) there was no mention of the 2g network shutting down in the email and to be honest I didn’t know it was still functional
I received the unit on the 6/12/16.

I live in the country so speed cameras not a big issue as I try not to over speed, but I recently drove to Melbourne couldn’t believe the amount of cameras down there.

Although the Maps can be a bit odd and it will try to take you on the scenic route at times
.
Email From TomTom, why I updated,
Every day, at TomTom, we work very hard to bring you the best navigation experience ever. A big part of this work is to continuously improve the quality of the maps and software that your navigation device runs on. As a consequence, however the memory required to install these higher quality maps increases every year.

As we work tirelessly to launch new technologies and deliver a great customer experience, it has become clear that some of our first generation navigation devices do not have sufficient memory to store the newest maps and features available.

For this reason, we will stop sales of map updates and other services as of November 15, 2016. Your trusted device will still work perfectly but you will no longer be able to buy any further map update.”

the only reference to traffic from TomTom I received 22/12/2016

“Have you activated TomTom Traffic yet?
Do it now.”

“TomTom Traffic provides accurate, real-time traffic information, so you avoid traffic and get where you need to be faster.”


#9

Thanks for letting us know @adsdiamond. TomTom have had a few things like this recently with problems around the understanding of ‘lifetime’ and some murky-feeling offers that have left at least a few consumers feeling confused or ripped off. You can always try to negotiate with TomTom, if they value you as a long term customer perhaps they will offer a remedy or a mutually agreeable solution. Keep us updated with how you go.


#10

As you purchased the TomTom after the 30 September 2016 date, TomTom would have known that the 2G network which supported part of the functionality of the TomTom they sold you was going to be shut down later that year (30 September 2017 or 30 April 2018 at the best).

This is quite deceptive of TomTom as they did not advise you such and it may have been important to know when making a purchase decision at that time. It would be reasonable for you to expect that your ‘new’ TomTom would have a full operational life similar to your previous one, namely 6 years. One would at least expect 3+ years.

I wonder/suspect they were offering ‘updated’ TomToms about 2 months after they know about the 2G shutdown, to move stock which had a short life/would become redundant. When they become redundant they have no value to anyone, including TomTom.

I would be possibly following up TomTom with deceptive and misleading claims under the ACL. Information about false and misleading claims can be found on the ACCC website here. You can also lodge a complaint with the ACCC using the link on this page should TomTom not come to the party and resolve the matter satisfactorily.

I think arguing fit for purpose or quality may be difficult under the ACL and maybe the above may be the best option.

Ensure that you provide any correspondence/emails received from TomTom, including information presented in the links in my earlier posts when lodging a complaint/making a claim.

If TomTom were silent on critical information about the shutdown of the 2G network on purchase (which they would have known), I would be requesting a similiar specification replacement TomTom which features live traffic/speed camera information using other connection methods (like bluetooth to a smartphone). If your previous TomTom had a map subscription period, maybe offer taking the period (6/12/16 to 30/4/18) you had for the current redundant TomTom off the replacement one. This would show that you are reasonable and aren’t trying to take advantage of TomTom’s poor customer service behaviour.


#11

I had a similar issue with tomtom. Took 2 months of back and forth, but they replaced my unit with a new one (a 620) in the end after I explained the ACL to the Indian helpdesk person and asked him to refer it to their legal department. A brief discussion with them and my 18 months old unit was replaced. 18 months is not an acceptable lifespan for their top (at the time, a 6100) model.

I should add that whether tomtom knew of the shutdown or not is immaterial. The models are their top models, and you paid a premium to have the 2g Sim card in it for live services. This key functionality is rendered useless in an unacceptably short amount of time.


#12

The reason for this is that the navigation unit only has 2G network capability. It would be the same as trying to use a 3G or 4G SIM in an old 2G phone. It simply doesn’t have the radio hardware to connect to the more modern networks.


#13

After some to and froing, and getting a bit terse but not impolite with TomTom received this reply, ( sometimes its worth persevering)
Dear Tom,

Thank you for your patience. My name is Sham customer support supervisor.

The reference number for your query is 180719-001113.

Tom, thank you for updating the incident. I understand you have used the device for only 15 months and the live service was shutdown, also, now the battery does not hold charge.

we are very keen to maintain a smooth and fruitful relationship with our loyal customers; therefore, I have discussed this issue further and have convinced to get a replacement for the device, however the device will TomTom GO 620 which is a smartphone connected and will get the traffic using the smartphone data.

You can confirm and I will generate a 100% voucher ($350) that can be used on TomTom website to purchase the navigation device.

If you have any further queries please not hesitate to contact our support team, we are available Monday to Friday 9.00 am to 5.30 pm on 1300 135 604 for Australia or 0800 450 973 for New Zealand.

With Best Regards,

Sham.
TomTom Customer Support Team.


#14

A good outcome @adsdiamond, thanks for letting us know :+1: