Right Direction, Wrong Approach: New Garmin-Asus Android A50 and WinMo M10 Nuviphones

Here's the WinMo-running M10 and Android-powered A50 both leaked in January. Problem is we still think they should get out of hardware and into apps.

But back to the phones. They're boasting it brings "more location technology than any other smartphone," as you'd expect from the satnav dudes at Garmin. The hardware isn't all that surprising, with a 3.5-inch HVGA capacitive touchscreen, a 3.0-megapixel camera with autofocus and geotagging, Bluetooth, 4GB of internal storage (with the usual microSD card slot) and an accelerometer. No word on Wi-Fi just yet.

Bundled with the phone is a car mount and power cable for the car, which is a nice touch—nothing worse than having to fork out for additional accessories after laying down a few hundred on the actual device. The software is, of course, Garmin's turn-by-turn navigation.

It'll go on sale sometime in the first six months of 2010—nice and vague—and the price hasn't been announced (or rumored, in the M10's case) just yet.

That aforementioned M10 (above) won't be showing up with Windows Mobile 7, launching instead with 6.5.3 (though presumably it'll be available for a software update once WinMo 7 launches at the end of the year). Specs sound just like they did when Asustek president Benson Lin blabbed last month about it, with the 3.5-inch WVGA resistive touchscreen, 4GB of internal storage, 512MB of RAM and the same again for ROM. Garmin and Asustek have chosen a 600MHz Qualcomm MSM 7227 chip which won't steal too many headlines, but at least it's running the most recent version of WinMo, eh? Again, wouldn't it be neat if you could get a Garmin app on a phone that was closer to 1GHz or on an iPhone?

The rumored price was $435 last month, but we'll keep you updated once we receive official word. [GSM Arena and BusinessWire]

Right Direction, Wrong Approach: New Garmin-Asus Android A50 and WinMo M10 Nuviphones