Mio certainly seems to have it covered with the feature list, but a cake is more than just a bunch of ingredients so let’s get a taste of the C710.
The first thing you’ll notice when you pick up the C710 is that it’s impressively slim and quite light, being only 20mm high and weighing 170g. This means that you can easily take it out and put it in a jacket pocket. Alternatively you can use the carry case and strap that Mio has provided.
You might want to do this for two reasons. Firstly, to remove it from your car for security reasons and secondly, to have it with you to navigate as you walk. Yes, the C710 also has a Pedestrian navigation mode and you can even enter co-ordinates, as preferred by ramblers. This is an immediate and perhaps decisive advantage over the TomTom One, which is much thicker at 66mm and 300g.
As well as the carry case the Mio comes complete with a very good in-car suction holder for the windscreen, that’s easy to set up and manipulate. Despite its thickness the battery is rated at a decent 4.5 hours with backlight on, though I didn’t get length of time before needing to recharge. The device seems well built, and the bulge at the top left containing the GPS aerial actually adds to its looks. There are four buttons running down the right hand side. The power switch is at the top, though this is more like a standby button. There’s a proper power button on the underside though you can only get to that with something narrow like a pen nib. There’s also a reset button should the device crash.
Also at the bottom is a USB connector, for connection to a PC, the in car charger or the wall charger.
The C710 runs Mio’s latest version of its software – version 3.1. To be honest I was expecting it to be easier to use than it actually was and the look and feel of the icons across the whole device do look a little home made, especially compared to the professional look of Tom Tom devices.
From the initial screen you can access a basic looking MP3 player and photo viewer. MP3’s sound perfectly respectable on the device but it’s only useful as a real space saver for travellers. The photo viewer is another gimmick and demonstrates the limitations of the LCD screen, which while fine for navigation is too grainy and dim to do photos justice. There’s also a calculator that can do various conversions. The Outlook contacts can also be browsed from here. You’re supposed to be able to synchronise with Outlook but I simply couldn’t get the PC software to do anything of the kind. From past experience I never found a GPS device that could actually correctly read Outlook addresses so I hardly considered it a loss.
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