GPS is increasingly becoming quite popular amongst our active motorists. We may know the city we live in like the back of our hand but that little extra help sometimes comes in handy. With that sentiment in mind here’s a closer look at Mio’s Moov 200 GPS device that SatGuide has available for those who wish to find their way around.

Form Factor
The Moov 200 is an easy to manage light weight device (145g) with a 3.5-inch TFT Touchscreen display (320 x 240 pixel resolution) that’s quite responsive although you may need to press it a bit harder than you would a mobile screen. It has a mini USB port at the bottom for PC connectivity (upgrading maps adding media etc.) and the charger. An SD/MMC card slot is located on the side so you can add a little more to the existing 2GB of onboard space. It supports up to 2GB of additional space. The package includes a dashboard/windshield stand and a car charging kit. The built-in speaker is quite loud so you won’t have a problem hearing the instructions as they're called out. What it could have done with is a 3.5mm audio out of earphone socket so it could be hooked up to your car's audio system for music.

Features and Performance

The general UI is uncomplicated and easy to ‘navigate’. It’ll take you no more than a couple of minutes to figure it out. Although I couldn’t change the display language from English, driving instructions were available in multiple local languages like Telegu, Tamil, Marathi, Hindi and more. You can also opt to use a QWERTY keyboard or switch to ABCD mode. The Samsung CPU makes sure that it’s always running smoothly and the SiRFstar III GPS module ensures quick signals and response time.

The music player supports multiple popular formats that include MP3, WAV and WMA. With ‘play mode’ settings, an on-board playlist creator and Artist/Album/Genre categorization the only thing missing is an EQ setting. While the music playback is only via the built-in speaker it’s quite clear but the lack of a 3.5mm audio out can seriously be felt as it doesn’t then become a device you can just take on the go for media. Video playback is a non issue. The Moov 200 will play pretty much any portable video format you can throw at it. Formats include – .mp4, .mov, .avi, .3gp, .asf and .wmv. Playback is seamless. You can also view images on the device one at a time or use the slideshow setting. It also has a search function if you ever need to locate a specific image.

GPS Functionality
The Moov 200’s mapping software has been supplied by Destinator Technologies with SatGuide maps version 8.0 for the new devices. It covers 628 cities with about 2 million Points of Interest (POI) preloaded making finding places a lot easier. If you’ve never used a GPS device before but use a mobile handset with a GPS radio, it’s not exactly the same. These devices are a little bit more comprehensive with data but that doesn’t make them complicated. A quick run though the booklet to familiarize yourself with the basics and you’re good to go. Start up is instantaneous. It does however take a few minutes outdoors before you’ll get good enough signal strength for satellites, but after that it’ll take seconds if restated even after an hour.

What I didn’t like about the system is that it doesn’t have an accelerometer so it won’t show you the direction you’re facing. In this case you’ll have to change your position to face the direction the car icon is on the screen. The maps are very detailed with very accurate depictions of major roads and even small ‘gullys’. There are plenty of user-friendly options provided that includes – an option to avoid selected points on your route, a Multi-Stop Planner for adding POIs while on the go or before you commence your journey and 3D map viewing. The device also stores journeys for later playback.

One minor issue you’ll have to contend with is not knowing the actual name of streets and addresses in a city. Most of us know places with names that they’ve been called for decades but those aren’t the official names that get printed on maps so that makes things a bit tricky. The process for looking for POIs isn’t simple as it should automatically show POIs in your closest location, instead you have to manually look for them by first finding your city.

The 720mAh battery doesn’t provide the very best of battery at just 5 hours of non stop usage. Then again it’s designed to be used in your car via the car charger so you’ll never have to worry about it dying out on you mid-journey.

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