While waiting for a review unit, which may or may never arrive on my cluttered desk, here are some screenshots taken from the phone. Note that the interface of the retail unit may not look identical to the pre-production unit from which these screenshots were taken, but it should give you a good idea of what to expect. They are in no particular order, and should be self explanatory to anyone who’s ever used a smartphone before, so no caption is really necessary.
In the 10-15 minutes that I played with the unit, overall experience was positive. The unit had a heft to it, and felt solid, not plasticky. The operating system was responsive, and the screen was nice, although not as nice as the iPhone3G’s screen, and definitely nowhere near the quality of an AMOLED screen like the one on the Samsung i8910 HD. The touch interface was good, scrolling can be done simply by flicking your finger on the screen and there’s no need to tap on scroll bars. The phone, as I mentioned in a separate post, supports 3D buildings and junction view, something not possible on other smartphones running the Garmin Mobile XT software. The GPS navigation software running on the G60 is definitely not Mobile XT, although there are some similarities. You can have multiple maps loaded into the device, which comes with 4Gb of built in storage, and can choose which map(s) to use by simply checking/ticking on the map(s) in the navigation software map selection screen. You can have the device playing music while navigating, when it’s time for a voice assisted prompt, the phone will automatically lower the volume of the playing music, play the voice prompt, then increase the volume of the music once the voice prompt is over. Nice.
I was told that the G60, once it is taken out from its docking cradle/car cradle, will immediately go into pedestrian mode for navigation. Every time the phone is turned on, the GPS receiver will begin looking for a satellite lock, and once the phone enters standby mode, the GPS receiver is turned off to conserve power. Geotagging of photos is supported, and tapping on a geotagged photo, for example in an email, immediately brings up a map with a drop pin on the map to show where the picture was taken – cool.
That was about as much as I got out of playing with the phone for the briefest of moments before it was taken away. I am trying to arrange for a review unit before the commercial availability of the phone sometime in the next week or so, so wish me luck, and stay tuned. At RM 1,799, I think it’s a good price for a device of its capabilities, but obviously whether the software will be up to the mark or not will depend on my hands on time with the unit. In the meantime, enjoy these screenshots, and I will upload another set taken when it is dark – as the interface is different from the day time interface. I’ll be posting it in another article so as not to make this one too long.