Feeds
60%
Evesham Bluemedia BM-6380 GPS navigator

Evesham BlueMedia BM-6380 GPS navigator

Intelligent flash storage arrays

Review Low-cost GPS satellite navigation systems have largely kept the European PDA market afloat for the past few years. Connecting a cheap GPS receiver to a Palm OS or Windows Mobile-based handheld and bundling some route-planning code has proved a popular, inexpensive alternative to high-end, high-price dedicated navigation systems. But the market continues to evolve, and the focus is shifting once again to dedicated, but still low-cost units.

Take BlueMedia's BM-6380. It's essentially the same hardware as a PocketPC but with the PDA features stripped out and replaced with a more basic, navigation-centric user interface and control cluster. It may not have Windows Mobile, but it's still a Windows CE device. UK and Ireland street maps are pre-installed on the bundled SD card.

Evesham Bluemedia BM-6380 GPS navigator

Turn the BM-6380 and you're presented with a UI that's positively Mac-like. Selecting Navigation installs the bundled route-planner, Destinator ND 5.1.126. It presents you with a typical map view, with icons on the left- and right-hand sides for quick access to extra information, menus and to toggle certain features. To the right of the landscape-oriented, 3.5in, 320 x 240, 65,536-colour screen is a five-way navigator, though it's behaviour is odd: the up and down arrows scroll the map in their respective directions, but the left and right arrows rotate the map. This makes sense - it allows you to 'drive' over map to follow the route you intend to take - but it's not how you expect the controls to work, so takes some getting used to.

Below the navigation control is a flag key to select Destinator's menu - pressing it over and over cycles through the menu's three pages. Underneath are zoom in and out keys. To return from the menu, press the button above the navigation control. Above it are two more buttons, one to return to the device's own menu, the other to turn it off. All the buttons are dimpled to make them easier to push with the BM-6380's telescopic stylus, though you're unlikely to be using this when the BM-6380's mounted in your car, for which the box contains all the necessaries. Still, I found the buttons too small to be easy to pushed with finger, as they need to be when the unit's fixed to the windscreen. They're flat and flush with the casing, which doesn't help.

But why use the controls on the unit? It's much easier to use the bundled remote control, which replicates all the unit's buttons and saves you having to reach over your steering wheel or across to some other part of the upper dashboard. A nice touch, the remote.

What it doesn't do, alas, is activate the on-screen buttons, which, like the physical ones, are too small and too close to the edge of the display to be comfortably pushed with your finger, particularly if you have large hands.

To complete our look around the hardware, there's a volume rocker control and earphone socket on the right-hand side. Underneath is the power port and as mini USB connector. Round the left-hand side, you'll find the SD card slot and an infra-red port, and on top sits the stylus release, recessed reset button and and external antenna connector.

Security for virtualized datacentres

More from The Register

next story
Boffins who stare at goats: I do believe they’re SHRINKING
Alpine chamois being squashed by global warming
What's that STINK? Rosetta probe shoves nose under comet's tail
Rotten eggs, horse dung and almonds – yuck
Comet Siding Spring revealed as flying molehill
Hiding from this space pimple isn't going to do humanity's reputation any good
Experts brand LOHAN's squeaky-clean box
Phytosanitary treatment renders Vulture 2 crate fit for export
Kip Thorne explains how he created the black hole for Interstellar
Movie special effects project spawns academic papers on gravitational lensing
LONG ARM of the SAUR: Brachially gifted dino bone conundrum solved
Deinocheirus mirificus was a bit of a knuckle dragger
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.