The first GPS-oriented smartphone promised by Garmin is delayed again. After Q3 2008 and Q1 2009, we are now promised to see the Garmin-Asus Nuvifone G60 in the third quarter this year.
The Nuvifone G60 packs a huge 3.55-inch touchscreen, a 3.2 megapixel camera, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity, but on top of all that - Garmin promise full-pack navigation suite with optimized touch-based interface. Unfortunately, the G60 doesn't run a popular smartphone OS, but a proprietary Linux-based one.
You may as well remember that not that long ago, Garmin and Asus announced a strategic partnership for making GPS-oriented mobile phones and they even announced their next device - the Nivifone M20 - this time based on Windows Mobile.
The announcement of the Nuvifone G60 was way back in February 2008 and we were promised a delivery in Q3 the same year. But here we are with the same promise but a year later.
Garmin claim the difficulties around this device come with the reason the G60 is started to build from scratch - hardware and software, and the process is long and tough. However this February we saw a working G60 prototype at the MWC 2009 and it looked quite fine to us. Perhaps the delay has something to do with the global financial downturn.
Anyway let's hope this time Asus and Garmin will succeed to build and release the Nuvifone on schedule, otherwise it might just turn out obsolete before it has even made an appearance.