No one's made a proper effort to put decent sat-nav functionality in a smart phone yet, so as we've previously reported, Garmin and Asus have teamed up to give it a bash. Out in Barcelona we had a gander at the Garmin-Asus nuvifone M20, one the first phones to emerge -- along with the G60 -- from the partnership. The M20 is a touchscreen phone that runs Windows Mobile 6.1 and features a custom-made finger-friendly interface that sits on top of Windows Mobile.
The model you see in the picture didn't actually work properly and was only a demo unit. From what we saw of the demo interface, it uses large icons to make navigation a little less fiddly. The handset itself is pretty standard, with a colourful casing and traditional layout. The problem about using Windows Mobile and following standard phone-design practices is that what you end up with is a rather boring product that doesn't distinguish itself from an already crowded market. We hope in the future Garmin-Asus stretches itself and produces some more innovative designs.
Pricing and availability details have yet to surface, which is annoying since we've been waiting for a Garmin phone for some time now. Fingers crossed the G60 and M20 come out soon in the UK. What we're really jonesing for though is something that shakes up the market -- and we think that Garmin-Asus could do that if it used Android.
This is the side of the Garmin-Asus nuvifone M20. Packed inside of this phone is HSDPA, Wi-Fi, GPS and 4GB or 8GB of memory.
This is the back of the Garmin-Asus M20, with a 3-megapixel camera at the top. We like the coloured case, but it's hardly the most exciting design.