By Keri Algar

SYDNEY, NSW: The four main GPS navigation players have gone head to head in a consumer satisfaction survey with the greatest discrepancy in approval being for software upgrades.

Tom Tom scored top marks across all the criteria including upgrades, accuracy, ease of use, screen display and price. Garmin came close in at second followed by Navman and Mio.

Most of the respondents were happy with the amount they spent on their navigation devices, with software upgrades, ease of use and accuracy  tipping the scales Tom Tom’s way. Mio attained only two out of a possible five stars for upgrades while Mio, Navman and Garmin scored three out of five starts for ease of use and accuracy.

The survey, coordinated by Canstar Blue, has recently initiated an additional online poll asking consumers if they always follow GPS instructions, or if they think they know better. Respondents can choose one answer between ‘I always follow the GPS, although sometimes I regret it’, ‘Mostly I ignore the GPS because I think I’m smarter!’ or ‘I wouldn’t know what it’s saying because I’m too busy yelling at it’.

“Consumers just want a GPS that works,” said Steve Mickenbecker, head of research at Canstar Blue.

“They are frustrated by inaccurate maps that have either never been right, or do not recognise road changes that have been in place for a number of years. A number of respondents reported getting lost on a number of occasions from following GPS instructions, and they still carry paper maps as a back-up.”

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