Reviewing Tungsten T3, part 3

by Volker Weber

[Continued from part 2]

After upgrading the firmware to production level and then applying the first fix pack, the T3 has been working without a single glitch. Its operation is simply perfect. I feel safe now with this machine and have passed the T on to Stefan. No need to accumulate machines.

I am still a huge fan of the Tungsten T line. They do exactly what I need. The hardware feels rock solid without being too heavy. Is there anything missing? Not really. Obviously one could add a GSM phone and a WLAN interface and I am pretty confident that palmOne will do this in the future. You may recall that I already had a Tungsten W here, that I did not particularly like because it was lacking Bluetooth. So combining BT and WLAN into one device is most likely the next step. The Treo 600, combining a Palm with a mobile phone is already out. palmOne has all the piece parts and needs to build a good package with enough battery life to make it worthwhile.

For now I am really happy with the Tungsten T3 and you will hear more about it in the future since it definitely positively has earned the editor-refuses-to-give-it-back award. :-)



I'm Considering buying a T3 (349US$) along with:

Socket Communications Bluetooth GPS Receiver - 229US$

and MapSonic Europe for Palm OS.

Do you (or your readers) happen to have any toughts on such a setup ?



Joel Demay, 2003-12-09

BT GPS receiver souns really cool. I have seen them but never used one. Just a few thougts.

I am not very fond of handheld navigation systems because they work well, where you don't need them, and the other way around. Inside cities GPS receiption may be bad and the software might miss a few turns you are making.

Then you need to power both devices and also hold them in place. The GPS must stay on the dashboard or at least at a window and the PDA must be held so that you can see it while driving. Finally storage space on an handhelds is limited. Dashboard navigation systems have gone from CD to DVD for more storage.

I received a press release the other day that there is a bundle as you describe currently on sale here. However I have not tested one of these units myself.

Volker Weber, 2003-12-09

I don't know if it is the case with the Mapsonic software and T3, but many handhelds also have no or poor voice output for guidance.

That makes them a lot less useful in towns if you are navigating on your own - you can't concentrate on the traffic and the handheld screen at the same time.

John Keys, 2003-12-10

I use the combination you suggest, with the exception of the software on the T3. Back in Vx days, I was a great fan of Tom Tom street level mapping. With the T, came the lack of support from them for their mapping products, which is a shame...they have now defected to the Pocket PC camp it would seem.

I spent some time looking for street level mapping for the T family and ended up using Mapopolis - it's not as nice as Tom Tom, but it's pretty good and now supports voice navigation which is pretty neat. It also recalculates routes on the fly if you ignore it (!) or miss a turning.

One of the neat features, if you travel at all, is that you can download maps for areas that you haven't bought and they will function fully for 9 days. I went to the States recently and this feature was pretty useful.

I shall look at Mapsonic...

John, 2003-12-14

I am using the T3 and digimap as the routing system for palm OS connected with a BT GPS Receiver with an display (smart GPS). This system works great. The street level is very detailed in europe, you can move the system from one to another car and it will work for up to 10 hours if the gps receiver isn't connectet to the car powersystem. The price in germany is 180€ for gps and digimap germany with voice guidance around 140€ incl. tax etc.
That's an affordable & flexible system but you should think about a big sd card to take more card material. I mostly use it in rental cars or on long distance motorbike trips with my BMW LT...


Wolfgang Andreas Bischof, 2004-01-13

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