Mio Latest to Make Beautiful, Flawed iPhone Clone

As usual gets tech right, software wrong.

If you follow the example of Garmin, being primarily known for making GPS devices is just a prelude to making a mobile phone so it was inevitable Mio – already a handset dabbler – would come up with this…

The ‘Explora K70’ was at least one product unveiled this week at CeBIT (Germany technology trade show?… in Hannover?… massive?… has been losing popularity?… no, I’ve managed to blank out the memories too) and it’s ”fairly interesting”.

The good stuff: it looks nice with clean lines and a large 3.5in touchscreen display, HSDPA/HSUPA, WiFi and GPS with turn-by-turn directions (naturally) while an in-car charger and GPS mount are optional extras but show the confidence Mio has in its sat nav heritage. On top of that the K70 is just 11.9mm thick, weighs a mere 115g and packs a nippy 528MHz CPU.

The downsides: well it all stems from a very common place, Windows Mobile 6.1 (no, not Windows Phone). Consequently a capacitive touchscreen is out as both the current OS and amazingly its recently announced successor don’t support it meaning a less responsive resistive panel shows up. At 400 x 240 pixels the resolution isn’t particularly good given the display size either. Furthermore, unlike HTC, there has been no finger friendly UI customisation so you’ll be struggling along with a stylus. A 3MP fixed focus camera is a lesser evil, but not exactly a plus point.

So near and yet so far? Given the GPS focus that’s a term which sums the K70 up nicely…

Mio Press Release
Images via GSM Arena

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