For those looking for a basic smartphone and full-fledged navigation system, T-Mobile’s GarminFone may be the ticket as it runs Android (although not the most current version of the OS) and features Garmin Maps that are stored locally on a memory card so you don’t need to worry about a constant Internet connection to get Google Maps with Navigation to work. The GarminFone is now down to $129 with a two-year contract on America’s fourth largest carrier.
GarminFone, even with the price drop, is still an interesting proposition for smartphone buyers, especially since you can get a Nokia Nuron from the carrier for roughly half the cost of the discounted GarminFone. Nokia has been bundling free maps with local guides, excellent walking and pedestrian routes, and 3D buildings called Ovi Maps on its Symbian-based handsets. Additionally, with the cost of Symbian smartphones dropping in prices lately, Nokia’s offering seems to be more competitive. The difference then is if a navigation-based smartphone warrants a $60 premium for an outdated version of Android OS.