Device convergence has seen the rise of sophisticated navigation applications hitting our smartphone platforms and, for a fraction of the cost, providing features we have come to expect on specialised equipment.
Released in the second half of 2012, the Navman MY300LMT and MY350LMT are examples of feature laden SatNavs with a budget price tag that consumers have come to expect.
Both models include 664 Mhz processor and clear 5” screen with resistive touch technology that adequately conveys menu selections, but struggles a little with multi-touch map exploring.
These Navman models offer lifetime map upgrades, which is a refreshing (and most obvious) change and the MY350LMT model also includes Improved Premium Driver alerts and Landmark Guidance PLUS. These features are aimed at using what the driver sees ahead as reference points beyond giving distance instructions.
CONCLUDED on PAGE 2
The Premium Driver Alerts include potentially hazardous areas ahead such as sharp bends, steep inclines, overtaking lanes, narrowing roads or known animal crossings. Coupled with Landmark Guidance Plus, which gives more visual clues to upcoming instructions, the MY350LMT becomes somewhat chatty.
“Turn left before the McDonalds” the Sat Nav tells us whilst also warning about safety cameras and railway crossings. Even normal instructions can be a bit naggy depending on the density of events, but noticeably more so than guidance devices we have tested in the past.
Navman states that a recent study had drivers shown a video of a streetscape with a car dealership actually used in Landmark Guidance were asked to look out for road signs and other landmarks as part of a navigation test. 84 per cent saw the dealership, while most (86 per cent) missed the actual target street in the video. The company therefore feels justified in its approach to using visual landmarks rather than the usual distance indicators.
There seems to be some issues with the new Navman algorithm for calculating routes. Trip Select will give you the option of Fastest, Economical, Easiest or Shortest route (with the majority of the time there being an overlap) and often, it may not be the “best” route. If you have the time, these devices offer a Rout Simulation mode to better organise your planned travel.
The Navman MY300LMT has a recommended retail price of AU$229 (with online prices more around the $170 mark) and the MY350LMT sports a RRP of AU$279 (online around $230)