Wednesday, April 21, 2021

Garmin Nuvifone G60

The Garmin Nuvifone was announced in early 2008 and has not been a smooth ride since then. The first smart phone from the makers AT&T has been delayed time and again. But they finally released it during the shopping season of 2009, yet they were late. The price tag of this phone is a jaw-dropping USD299.99. It is still not in much competition without the specifications being updated as it was announced originally. There is probably very less to be said about this GPS enabled phone.

Design:

The design is very much clean and pretty descent. The 3.5 inch resistive touch screen is the main attraction of the design which makes it to look almost similar to other GPS navigation systems of Garmin. The black soft touch finishing is very attractive. Along with this the sides and the camera is covered by graphite colored metallic border, and the black colored caps at the upper and lower end of the phone are glossy. It measures at 4.4×2.3×0.5 (HWD). It is considerable bulky at 4.8 ounces. It has a very sturdy build that could resist a fall which is pretty attractive, but it could have been better if it was a bit slimmer. The screen does not have the sharpest display. Images are not as crisp as it can be expected. But it is bright enough to view maps either in day mode or night mode by changing it manually or set it to automatic.

There is a built-in accelerometer in the display channel but the working is pretty annoying and frustrating as the map changes the orientation when swapped between vertical and horizontal positions. Coming on to the user interface of G60, the shortcut keys are absent which is a huge disappointment. The sliding menu features all the applications of the smart phone. It does not have many physical keys except for the power button, volume button and the camera button. A micro SD expansion slot and a mini USB port is provided for memory expansion and connectivity respectively. A car mount kit is provided to fix the phone to the system while using it for navigation. It offers a list of wireless options, such as Bluetooth, WiFi and 3G data and voice communications.

Features and Performance:

The Garmin G60’s approach has been very simple, but its movement towards extremity has been pretty disappointing. The G60’s navigation is more or less similar to its earlier navigation systems. The dialer screen, call list tab are all very basic with no advancements being made. The G60’s email application is in no competition with its counter parts where the special advanced features such as star, label are absent. None of the G60’s Extras options show a full hearted attempt. All these are premium paid services at an initial charge of USD5.99.

The device has preloaded maps and a point of interest (POI) database containing a huge list of POI is provided. The G60 provides latest traffic updates, weather information and fuel prices etc in the premium paid services. The services can be selected after experiencing them for a one-month trial pack and can be subscribed accordingly. The GPS is available is 2D and 3D view. Apart from this, we can set either north to point at the top or the direction we are moving to point at the top of the phone. Using 3G network of AT&T, it takes around 70 to 75 seconds to load a few pages like ESPN and CNN, while it takes a long time to load other pages. You will be confused in a situation where there is no indication of what is happening and you never know if the configuration failed or it was just taking time to load the page. You can send emails and also bookmark certain links. But you cannot delete browser history. You can send and receive only text messages, but not multimedia messages. Also there is no file manager to find and open the documents to be viewed.

A basic MP3 player is provided with an amazing sound clarity with the speakers being able to deliver excellent quality of sound. A 2.5 mm jack is provided for headphones. The quality of still images is average. Panel switching and application switching is amazingly fast and no major software lag can be experienced in G60. The booting of G60 is comparatively slow. The absence of home button is really tiring as you have to manually hit the back button every time you want to get out of the situation where it grew tiring.

Conclusion:

All in all, the G60 has a lot of minuses compared to its pluses, such as:

  • Absence of home screen.
  • Camera is just above average.
  • Accelerometer does not work time and again.
  • Interface is attractive at first, but the design is very strange.
  • The low battery backup is another disadvantage. It does not even last even a day.
  • No car charger included.
  • Added monthly charges for the apps.

You will have a lot more and faster access to the net and web based apps. You must be lucky if you get to read a few mails and reply to a few of them. This smart phone will let you know how desperately you may need to connect it to the power cable as the battery backup is pathetic.

There are very positive points such as, the fast toggling of applications and panels, the sound quality of the speakers, soft finishing that could prevent slipping and the rigid design. If you are looking for a good smart phone with navigation system, this is not a good choice and you may have to look out for better options.

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