Mio launches new Navman range

by Michael Smith (Veshengro)

London, UK: Tuesday, May 12, 2009 saw the launch of the new Navman Spirit Range, now under the Mio Brand, at one of London's prestigious venues, No. 5 Cavendish Square, W1. The Venue is great, the food and drink excellent as was the company. But we are not here to discuss the venue, I know, although it would be worth discussing too.

This new range, the first one launched following Mio’s merger with Navman, offers ground-breaking sat nav functionality and fantastic content from Google and wCities to enable drivers to explore more on the road.

The Navman Spirit range takes a fresh, exciting approach to navigation, with three models across two design options - the palm-sized 3.5-inch screen to the sharp, bright 4.7-inch widescreen and a stunning 4.7-inch super flat widescreen. Ergonomically designed with soft-curve edges and a stylish, compact exterior, the Navman Spirit range represents some of the slimmest, most lightweight sat nav devices ever seen.

The Navman name is a well-known one in Britain with regards to personal navigation devices and will now, under the Mio Brand and owned by Mio Technology, get a wider airing, so to speak, in other parts of the world. Mio Technology is a company out of Taiwan and owns the Mio brand name.

Consolidated now, as it is, under the Mio umbrella Navman is number three of personal navigation devices (PNDs) worldwide.

The ‘Spirit’ part of the name refers to the new software that powers the range. Redesigned from the ground up, Spirit uses a simple and colourful menu system that takes users to all of the features within a couple of ‘taps’. The new slidetouch™ screen brings up windows that glide on and off to help find what you are looking for quickly and easily, without needing to go back to the main menu unless you want to.

The range is rather impressive and the devises are very well designed indeed.

Testing performance and such is, alas, not something that is easily done at such launch events and I do hope, therefore, that maybe I may be able to get a unit for further tests and trials in oder to do a thorough review of the Navman Spirit range.

Mio also promises some more interesting new products for later this year, to hit the marked sometime in Summer 2009.

Amongst those will be a somewhat larger navigation device with built-in freeview digital TV. This will come in 4.7inch and 7inch screen size. Those are definitely something to behold and should find great interest among the public, I should think.

The Navman Spirit range of PNDs is aimed mostly now at the “replacement” buyer who has used either Navman or other such devices and is looking for something that can do more and that has more to offer.

Users have asked for nice clear maps without clutter and also to pedestrian/walking mode and this new range offer this and much more. Amongst others there is the “realistic junction views” function, the facility to calculate the most economic route, saving money in fuel and carbon emissions, and an “Explore Mode” that give points of interest but also many others such as pharmacies, restaurants, hotels, etc.

In the pedestrian mode parks, outlines of building and such all are shown and should make for a great user experience.

The Navman Spirit range is available in UK stores in May. For more information please visit www.mio.com.

© 2009