Garmin-Asus nuvifone A50 hands-on

The Garmin-Asus pairing has given birth to a new Android handset that offers more promise than previous versions of the nuvifone. Not only does the A50 give you all the benefits of Garmin's navigation heritage, it also gives you the freedom of the Android platform, albeit version 1.6.

Garmin-Asus has taken the time to skin it a little, so this isn't the raw Android you'll find elsewhere, with a unique scrolling menu, so it will sit at the side of the screen and you can scroll up and down your top apps without having to open it all up.

The device itself will come with full mapping on-board (meaning no data costs, or missing maps when you have no reception) and you'll get the maps for your territory – so UK customers can expect to get Europe-wide mapping.

Sitting at the core of the A50 is a Qualcomm 7227 600MHz processor, so it is relatively powerful too. 4GB of memory is onboard with expansion offered through a microSD card slot.

The display is a 3.5-inch HVGA (320 x 480), which isn't the highest res out there but ample enough. A 3-megapixel camera sits on the back and you get a whole host of connectivity, including HSDPA/CDMA, Wi-Fi b/g, Bluetooth, and a pile of sensors.

Of course this is really all about navigation so you get that GPS which is both assisted and aided and you also get an e-compass, so you'll get the benefits of Google Street View etc. You'll also get the full car kit too when you buy it.

Discussions are underway with various carriers to bring the phone to the UK, but we don't have definite details as yet.