Asus & Garmin Finally Debut Android-based Smartphone

Garmin-Asus, the partnership between the two consumer electronics giants, has yielded its first Android smartphone, the nuvifone A50, days before the start of the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona next week.

Both players have had common plans to bring out a phone for the past two years but for unknown reasons, no Garmin-Asus smartphones never made it to the UK.

The A50 apparently uses a Qualcomm gpsOne platform for its satellite navigation feature and will bring "more location technology than any other smartphone" according to their joint press-release.

Other than that, the phone sports a glossy finish with a particularly large unused part near the bottom of the smartphone itself. The screen is a 3.5-inch HVGA (480x320 pixels, 3:2 screen ratio) capacitive touchscreen with multitouch.

It apparently comes with the Android OS, Google Maps & services, Garmin turn-by-turn navigation and a customised user interface. The nuvifone has 4GB internal storage with microSD expansion reader and an accelerometer as usual plus a 3-megapixel camera.

The phone also shows its business side with Microsoft Exchange server sync capabilities and a sleek, corporate look and what appears to be a connector on the left hand side (useful in landscape mode).

Our Comments

Expect it to appear in Europe before the end of June 2010 and to debut in the US fairly soon. As a reminder, Google Maps Navigation is not available outside the US for now.

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(The Register)