Troubles renewing RDS/TMC traffic. TT does not know what they are doing.

Discussion in 'TomTom Services' started by Timon, Feb 5, 2009.

  1. Timon

    Timon

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Tustin, CA USA
    TomTom Model(s):
    GO920T
    TomTom tech support is totally inept as is their online order system.

    On Monday I tried to renew my RDS/TMC traffic for another year. The transaction seem to go fine and I did find the download in my TT HOME update area but every time it tried to load on my 920T I get a HTTP 500 error. After several tries I called Tech Support.

    Tech Support says that my order has not completed but is in a pending state with the bank. FYI, My bank says that they authorized the transaction but TT had not yet completed their part. TS says I should wait another day. Why I ask? if the transaction is not complete did they put the file where TT Home can download and install it? No answer.

    Tuesday, called TS again and they say "Wait another day" I day, "Hell no" and have them escalate, they do, but I have to wait till the next morning.

    Wednesday, call TS again and nothing. They have no answers and are of no help.
    I ask them if they can pull the file from my download area and e-mail it but they say NO. ​
    I ask if they can get me a demo file that would last a couple of weeks and they say NO.​
    I ask them if they can call the escalation team and they say NO.​
    Bottom line is that they can't do anything except for me to try again the next day.

    Thursday, called TS again. Still no answers but now they tell me I have to wait 3 to 5 days for the escalation team to do something. I ask, Hell, is this anyway to service customers? All I get is sorry. Why should we have to wait 24 hours for each level of support? Why can't a manager directly contact the escalation team?

    So, has anyone else had problems renewing their RDS/TMC or other issues with their badly designed order system?

    Does anyone have phone numbers to some higher up in the company to complain to?

    At this point I have no trust that TT can or wants to fix this in a timely manor.
     
    Timon, Feb 5, 2009
    #1
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  2. Timon

    Krellan

    Joined:
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    TomTom Model(s):
    930T
    The TomTom corporation seems to have big problems handling RDS-TMC traffic.

    1) Confusing multiple products that often get misordered.

    Evidently there's a separate Euro and US antenna cable for RDS-TMC, and they often get confused. They are not interchangeable. I've frequently read stories about people getting the wrong cable. I bought a TomTom "930 T" box, which had an included RDS-TMC cable, in an effort to avoid this problem, and it seems to have worked for me. My cable worked correctly the first time!

    2) TomTom is a European company. Over there, RDS-TMC traffic data is free (one of many services provided by good European government). It's not like here at all, where you get one year of service free with the cable (partly justifying the huge markup applied to what the price of the cable should have been), and then you have to pay Clear Channel for the data again for another year.

    TomTom doesn't really have a billing structure for RDS-TMC at all, as they see no need for it over at their European headquarters, so it never really did fit into their corporate culture at all. I'm kind of dreading having to renew, as they don't have the systems in place to handle it well. Among other things, there's no way to see the expiration date of my current subscription.

    I also didn't have to do anything to activate the subscription, which worries me: how does the RDS-TMC service know what the first day of my subscription was? Was the clock running while the TomTom was still sitting in its box at the store, before I bought it? With the current TomTom setup, there's no way to know.

    The TomTom HOME software already has the renewal up for purchase. There's no information that is provided about it, other than having to pay $60.

    3) TomTom's implementation of RDS-TMC is poor. There's no way to see the displayed radio signal level, instead, all you can see is three states: "cable not connected", "searching", and "got it".

    You can't see what frequency the radio locked on to. The TomTom also doesn't select frequencies based on your route, so as others have said, so when traveling between cities, the TomTom will remain stuck on the "old" city and not properly advance to the "new" city.

    At a minimum, TomTom should have provided a table of frequencies and cities, downloadable through TomTom HOME, that would teach the TomTom what frequency to use for each region you are approaching along your route, and when the best time to change frequencies would be.

    4) It's a car, it already has a built-in FM antenna! TomTom should have provided a pass-through adapter to hook to the existing car stereo. The extra antenna cable on the windshield looks tacky.

    5) TomTom looks to be defocusing on RDS-TMC, and shifting customers to the cellular data service. Their newer GPS units have a cellular modem and SIM card slot built-in.

    The RDS-TMC traffic data uses the same software and menu structure in the TomTom as the cellular data service, but most of the information simply isn't there. TomTom is implementing RDS-TMC as a subset of cellular. I wonder how much data is truly in the RDS-TMC signal, and how fast it updates? It seems that a radio broadcasting service could easily send out steady continuous updates, compared to a cellphone which would have to keep downloading the data all the time, would could quickly get expensive.

    I would probably have used the cellular service instead of RDS-TMC, but my phone isn't compatible with TomTom's Bluetooth link for data (the TomTom works fine as a Bluetooth hands-free kit for voice, though). I also don't look forward to paying a larger phone bill to enable tethering.

    A great use of a built-in cellular modem would be to check to see if the GPS is stolen! If somebody stole my GPS, I could use the TomTom HOME software to report it stolen. Then, the next time it called in to get the cellular data connection, it would upload its current GPS location through the cellular service, and I'd have a better shot at getting it back.
     
    Krellan, Feb 11, 2009
    #2
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  3. Timon

    GAW

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2006
    Messages:
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    Location:
    CA Bay Area
    TomTom Model(s):
    920
    Their server that is supposed to handle this is just not working for months. They have worked around it by swapping the receiver.

    You have had enough of the run-around -tell them to send you a new receiver and you want it shipped NOW!
     
    GAW, Feb 11, 2009
    #3
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