Garmin Nuvi 350: Insanely recommended 07 Dec 2005
812 comments Latest by George
I recently purchased a Garmin Nuvi 350 to replace an older Garmin 2620. Did I need to replace it? No. The 2620 worked, but I didn’t use it much because it was bulky, the UI was sluggish, and it just never quite felt right to me. Too may steps to do simple things. Too many features and buttons getting in the way.
So, back to the 350… Oh wow. The Nuvi 350 is insanely good. Next to the iPod it’s the the best piece of consumer electronics I’ve purchased in the last 5 years. It really is that good. It’s perfectly executed. Here’s why:
- It’s small. Really small. 3.87 x 2.91 x 0.87 inches small. It doesn’t get in your way while you’re driving. It doesn’t feel like there’s a boulder on your dashboard.
- It’s just about all screen. There’s very little chrome. There are no buttons. There’s no goofy shapes or lights or anything. It’s just a nice, really bright, surprisingly clear screen.
- It’s fast. The UI is always ready for you. No pauses, no lock-ups, no delays when you touch the screen. It’s refreshing (as most touch-screen based things I’ve used are usually sluggish).
- It’s all about convention over configuration. Plug it in and it works for 90% of all cases. No config. Zero learning curve (I mean it — ZERO). Yes, you can change some stuff if you want to, but there’s no need to.
- It couldn’t be easier to use. Really.
- It speaks the name of the next street. It doesn’t just say “Turn left in 0.2 miles” it says “In 0.2 miles turn left on Paulina.” This makes a significant difference. I didn’t think it would, but it basically allows you to keep your eyes on the road (instead of a map) 99% of the time.
- It has a 4-8 hour battery. This means you can take it with you (because it’s so small and light). You can walk with it if you need to know how to get somewhere on foot. You can take it with you to Europe on vacation and never get lost in the car or on foot.
- You can load it up with MP3s and Audiobooks so you always have something to listen to should you forget your iPod in the car.
- You can import custom points of interest that other people have compiled. For example, people can compile speed traps or police camera locations and share that file. Load that into your Nuvi and you’ll be alerted before you head into a trap.
- It’s accurate and very sensitive. It even works inside my garage with no windows. Apparently this is because of a new SiRF chipset.
And there’s more… But really, this is such a fantastic product. I can’t remember the last time I’ve been so satisfied with an electronic purchase. If you’re in the market for a mobile nav system for your car, bike, motocycle, or just for exploring a new city on foot without getting lost, you simply can’t go wrong with the Garmin Nuvi 350.