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Garmin-Asus A10 review

Garmin-Asus A10 review
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The Garmin-Asus A10 combines the versatility of the Android platform with Garmin's GPS location technology, bringing people and places together - whether used inside or out, while walking or driving. Other features include a 5MP camera, WiFi, Bluetooth 2.0, Media Player, USB 2.0 and support high-speed HSDPA 7.2Mbps.
Review On : Garmin-Asus A10
19-Oct-2010
By Loh Ving Sung
At A Glance:
Pros:

- Android 2.1
- Extensive navigation functions
- Affordable
Cons:
- No accelerometer
- Cut, Copy and Paste doesn’t work well
Garmin-Asus A10 Review Garmin-Asus A10 Review

The Garmin-Asus A10 is a navigation-centric smartphone, armed with high-end features and a bunch of navigation applications. Let’s take a look at the Android powered A10.
In the box
- Garmin Asus A10
- Charger (Adaptor)
- 3.5mm headphones
- MicroUSB cable
- Manual
Garmin-Asus A10 Review

Exterior, Controls and Screen
The Garmin Asus A10 is a candybar phone, with a 3.2-inch HVGA TFT capacitive touchscreen which displays 65k colours. The A10’s dimensions are at 110x58x13.9mm and it weighs 140g. The phone is covered in glass and uses matte plastic at the back of the phone. It has a nice dense weight to it and should fit easily into a palm or a pocket.
At the bottom of the screen has 3 touch buttons – a return button, home screen button and the menu button. The power button and the 3.5 mm audio jack located on top, and on the right spine there is a volume rocker, meanwhile on the left there is the MicroUSB slot and the navigation cradle slot.
Garmin-Asus A10 Review Garmin-Asus A10 Review
Garmin-Asus A10 Review

The phone is powered by a Qualcomm 600 MHz processor, with 512 MB SDRAM, 512 ROM with a MicroSD card slot that will support up to 32GB. The A10 naturally comes with an A-GPS GPSOne-Gen7 receiver. However there is no on-board accelerometer, which is an odd exception for a smartphone. At the back of the device is the 5-megapixel Camera, open up the back cover and the microSD card slot can be spotted on the right spine. The SIM card slot is underneath the battery.
Software, Applications and Games
The Android OS 2.1 (Eclair) is armed with multitouch, and is generally smooth. Garmin-Asus didn’t add a modified UI on top of Android, but you’ll still get the multiple homescreens, which are entirely customisable. Garmin-Asus included a ‘where to’ navigation homescreen.
Garmin-Asus A10 Review Garmin-Asus A10 Review

The lock screen has a lock/unlock slide and a mute slider. Unlock the screen, and you’ll get dialler and GPS and at the bottom. Android 2.1 supports live wallpaper, and allows easy customisation. There are plenty of widgets and shortcuts that can be placed. The Android platform supports Gmail, and an external mail programme.
The QWERTY keyboard here is worth nothing, as Android 2.1 adds cut, copy, and paste features to it. Tapping on a word will highlight it, holding the tap will being up a box with editing options. However, selecting text out of a sentence is a bit of a hassle, as the selection tab is rather wonky, and will require some patience to work with.
The navigation features are extensive, with programmes like Ciao, Garmin Maps with where Am I, Google Maps Navigation and Routes. Garmin Maps gives you turn-by-turn navigation and other options like a trip computer and Google Street View. Ciao allows you to tell your friends where you are, much like Google Latitude. Google Maps is also available however turn-by-turn navigation isn’t supported locally on Maps.
PIM wise, there are Calendar, Weather, Document Viewer, Converter, Calculator and the World Clock applications. The Android market allows applications for the A10, although there are still no options for paid apps just yet.
The Android web-browser is intuitive, and fits to screen and supports multitouch. But the lack of accelerometer will make viewing webpages less enjoyable. Social networking apps like MySpace, Twitter and Facebook are pre-installed. There is also a dedicated Youtube portal.
The music player is simple to use, our Multimedia library is automatically sorted by artist, album, genre and composer and searching tracks by gradual typing is available. The music player allows quick playlists. The process of adding tracks to the library is as simple as choosing the refresh option.
Camera, Video and Audio
The A10 packs a 5-megapixel camera, 2592х1944 pixels, and autofocus. The picture quality is crisp and clear, and macro shots are easily done with the camera’s autofocus. The camera has a few simple settings, from colour effect, lighting and picture resolution. The camera supports geo-tagging, and will do so automatically when you allow it to. The A10 has a video camera that shoots at 320x240 and shoots MPEG-4.
Internet Connectivity
The device supports quad-band connectivity (850/900/1800/1900) and Bluetooth 2.0 EDR. It also supports data connectivity with HSDPA 7.2Mbps, WiFi 802.11b/g, EDGE and GRPS.
Verdict
Overall, the Garmin Asus A10 is a fine navigation smartphone, as the device doesn’t divert too much attention from its core function- a GPS device coupled with a phone. The Android 2.1 platform installed on board is easy-to-use, and has an all-business feel to it without gaming or leisure app. At RM 1,399, the A10 is packed with quite a few high-end features while maintaining affordability. We highly recommend this phone to just about anyone looking for a mid-level smartphone with GPS functionality.


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