Boys Toys: Nokia 6110 Navigator review

anupamkansal

Active Member
Boy’s Toys

Nokia 6110 Navigator

What do you do when you get bored of your old mobile phone? This problem confounded me last month…and I came up with an ingenious solution…“buy a new one”!

Well, the mind to purchase had been made up, and it was time to get down to the execution of the plan. The customary research later, I went ahead and bought a Nokia 6110 Navigator. So, what was it about this phone that gave it the privilege of being patronized by me?! Hmmm, this has started smelling like a review, so let’s make it one.

The 6110 Navigator is Nokia’s latest slider phone that sports the Global Positioning System or GPS. Well, the N95 came up with that last year, but the 6110 Navigator has upped the ante by fitting it with a full-fledged voice navigations system (route 66 v8, Navteq). Yes, folks, a US style navigation with a lady speaking sweet Hindi! She guides you as you go home or come to work – “kripya doosara baya more le jiya, 700 meter agea” OR “Take the second turn on the left, 700 meters ahead” .

The phone has maps of 8 Indian cities (Delhi & NCR, Mumbai with Thane, Pune, Hyderabad, Bangalore, Kolkatta, Chennai, Jaipur) and most major highways, and boy, do these work! It took me on joy ride from my in-laws place to home using unchartered Delhi lanes and by lanes I had never encountered before. I was pretty impressed. Also, the GPS is really quick to lock on, less than a min generally. Compared to my Magellan explorist 210 it is faster by over 2-3 minutes and also catches signals inside my house when near a window, where the explorist fails mostly.

Of course, it has its quirks. On a weekend trip, it misread the distance between Delhi and Behror (on NH 8 in Rajasthan) to 300 kms. The actual distance is less than 100 kilometers, and the 6110 had full plans to take us to Jaipur and back! But, gadgets should also be allowed to err once in a while, and I use the navigator extensively during my travels now. Another problem is that, though the Navigation is free for lifetime, the maps are not. Currently it has Q3 2007 maps, to update maps, you need to buy new ones, not that I am complaining too much. Other companies make Maps free & navigation paid, one way or the other you end up paying money. Compared to the usability factor, it is a mixed bag for the GPS, navigations is good, but it has missing bread crumbs trail marking method, so while hiking, backtracking is not possible, or you cant retrace your route, as you can in the 210. Also, placing a marker or landmark (waypoint) is difficult here. U need to start a second application to use the trip meter etc facility. But the navigation screen is too good 

Next the voice quality. It is good in the handset mode, and loud enough on the speaker phone mode for effective navigation, thanks to the double speakers. I can hear the instructions, while the near shoulder phone is in my mobile pocket in my backpack and I am driving my bike with the helmet on. The bundled Real Player plays streaming and saved videos really well, although unfortunately there is no facility to save streaming videos. The inbuilt music player is ok and the music playback quality is also average, though it is loud, thanks to the two stereo speakers in the back. Mind you, it is no walkman phone. The call quality is good (even on speaker phone mode) and the ring volume is pretty high. The radio is also good (though u still need to plug in the wired hands free to act as aerial, so I have never used it except for testing) and supports radio data services. The voice recorder records only for 1 hour after which u have to press the record button again. It is supposed to be able to record voice calls also, but I have never tried.

The inbuilt browser is effective and fast, but the 40 MB storage does run out of steam with too much multi-tasking, especially when using the navigator and browser simultaneously. It comes with a 512mb uSD card, which I have upgraded to 2GB uSD card (Rs. 550, 5 years warranty), which is the max supported.

The camera (2MP) takes good photos in good (sunlight etc.) light, but terrible ones in low light. The Sony Ericsson has better cameras but the Navigator has a great screen! Also, the number of settings possible is really scarce, only white balance and color tone, no ISO, no custom timer. Two good additions are the panorama mode and a very bright LED flash. Unfortunately you can’t use the LED flash as a flashlight for the dark, as you can use in many other mobile phones. The camera and volume buttons are difficult to get to and I in fact use the center key to click photos and to zoom. The video recording is similar. In short, it is a compromise in camera department. The camera is covered by a slide door, you open it and the camera is launched.

Data Services: it comes loaded with GPRS, EDGE and 3G (3.6MBits speed !!!!) services, unfortunately 3G is not available in India as yet, will wait till it is here to get the full use of the phones full data capabilities. It does not have infrared (who cares), wifi ( I miss it). Data transfer to computers is via Bluetooth and a high speed USB port. Good news is that Nokia has dumped the proprietary cables for the much simpler and cheaper mini USB cables which comes bundled with the set and is available for Rs.20 in Nehru Place. I would suggest that you buy a card reader if you do large music / movie transfer to the phone regularly, but on the down side, card removal si terrible due to bad design of the door and socket. The card is hot swappable.

Inbuilt applications: It comes preloaded with Quick Office 3.0 (for ms word docs) while the latest is 5.0 and Adobe PDF, Notes, Basic Calculator & Converter, Calendar. I have installed Free Viern’s dictionary, Chess, Google Maps (unfortunately no routing for India) Fring, Opera Mini, emTube (to download youtube videos), DivX player etc.

Some fault lines. It has VOIP support but no native VOIP client. The small doors for USB, SD Card are tacky and delicate. The navigation key is located badly and I constantly end up launching the application unintentionally. Updates of maps have to be paid for, and the package comes minus a headphone adaptor and a power-pin converter. L A glaring absence is that of a car mount, considering the device is meant to be an in-car navigation system!

But, the GPS and data capabilities clinched it for me, and it has not disappointed me in both. Battery back up is good, but buy an in-car charger as the GPS can flatten a fully charged battery in 5 hours, and so can extensive data use.

Please visit the http://www.nokia-asia.com/6110, the official web page for the Nokia 6110 Navigator
 

darth_lucifer

Rides R Us
Compared to the usability factor, it is a mixed bag for the GPS, navigations is good, but it has missing bread crumbs trail marking method, so while hiking, backtracking is not possible, or you cant retrace your route, as you can in the 210.
Thats a major point missing.

In nokia N series phone with GPS to save the trail you need GPRS hence civilization.Is it the same for Navigator.
 

Admin01

Administrator
Excellent review Anupam, I agree with Darth that breadcrumb feature is quite major and should have been present.
 

torque

Active Member
I think the back tracking feature is more to do with software and 'may' be implemented by Nokia later if the demand is high enough.
 
grt review thx a lot brother ... i was looking forward to get N96
but not sure when as i now think i need a phone change.
 

anupamkansal

Active Member
The Back Tracking and Bread Crumbs Trail is a software feature ... and not related to GPRS in any way :) And you donot need the service provider network etc for the GPS or Navigation to function properly, these two things are independent. I am currently looking at free ;-) softwares that can help me do that, will post if I get some good one.

BTW, as compared to Nokia mapping & navigation software, Navteq is much better :)
 

mishra_rp

New Member
hi anupam...

i have bought nokia 6110navigator in mumbai and i also have used it extensively in mumbai and pune. I am impressed with its GPs performance and accuracy. The looks of the phone may not be good but its features n performance...is worth paying the price of 13200/- in mumbai.
 
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