With mobile phones increasingly integrating GPS functionality it could be said dedicated satellite navigation devices rather missed the boat when it came to offering walking directions. Still, better late than never...
With the 1200 and 1300 series Garmin is launching its first units to specifically support pedestrian directions. To be fair Garmin is going the whole hog however with an optional CityXplorer map pack which will include routes across parks and journeys based on using public transport including buses and tube networks.
Aside from this sensibleness the two lines differ most in terms of format as the 1200 line sports a 3.5in touchscreen and its base model (the '1250') carries national mapping while the '1260T' adds international maps, Bluetooth speakerphone functionality and free lifetime traffic updates. The 1300 range on the other hand steps up to a 4.3in wide touchscreen display with the '1350' matching the 1250 as the base spec, the '1350T' throwing in traffic updates and the '1370T' adding Bluetooth support.
"Our nüvi devices are known for the great navigation experience they provide in the vehicle. Now our customers can have that same great experience when navigating an unfamiliar city by foot or public transportation," said Garmin Sales VP Dan Bartel. "The personal navigation device (PND) is no longer just for the car - take it with you wherever you go and enjoy the enhanced usability and rich features only a dedicated device like this can offer."
Fair play Dan, but I suspect there may be a few odd looks as you watch your GPS unit on the bus or desperately scratch around for a signal on the Underground. Of course, I'm being facetious - but only a bit.
We're still waiting on UK pricing but a Q2 release timeframe for both ranges is planned and CityXplorer map packs are expected to run at approx £10 per city. Ahhhh, yes that's the sneaky trick...