Android Police



Garmin's vivofit jr. arrives alongside its Android app

A few days ago, Garmin announced its newest wearable for kids: the vivofit jr. Despite the name being in lowercase, it sounds like a pretty neat device. Garmin claims that it is water-resistant, comfortable, durable, and that it has more than a year's worth of battery life. Like other fitness trackers, the vivofit jr. will monitor the child's steps, sleep, and physical activity.

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Garmin Shows Off The Fēnix 3 And Epix Smartwatches, For Those Who Want A Sportier Alternative To Wear And Gear

You might not know it if you don't regularly peruse the less-traveled sections of your local electronics store, but Garmin and its competitors have been making impressively sophisticated GPS watches for years. They only escaped the "smartwatch" label because the buzzword hadn't been invented yet. Now Garmin, like Timex, is approaching the smartwatch from the other end, adding more and more features onto a design that's been present for quite a while.

The new fēnix 3 and epix smartwatches (pronounce that long e and use lowercase, or Garmin's brand managers will give you dirty looks) are, first and foremost, fitness devices.

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Garmin Announces the Monterra, A Handheld Android-Powered GPS With WiFi For The Outdoorsy Types

GPSes used to be expensive and uncommon, but now half of the population carries one around in their pockets. That new Android smartphone you bought? It has GPS-functionality built-in through Google Maps. So does that new tablet. But get this - dedicated GPS units are still a thing, and I'm not talking about the kind that you mount on your dashboard. Today Garmin announced Monterra, the company's first Android-powered handheld outdoor GPS with WiFi.


Garmin's lightweight device is basically a rugged smartphone without a cell radio. Or, if you're old enough to have ever used one, a PDA. It is built to assist outdoorsy types as they conquer all kinds of unpleasant terrain, along with water.

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Android 2.1 Update For T-Mobile Garminfone Available For Manual Installation; All 10 Owners Ecstatic

Granted, this particular bit of news is only valuable to the (very) small crowd of people who purchased the T-Mobile Garminfone, but it's nice to hear nonetheless. The good news: Garmin has released an update to Android 2.1 (Éclair). The bad: it's a manual update.

The update process isn't complicated per se - but it's definitely more work than an OTA:

1. Download the software update package for your Garminfone which can be found here:

2. Connect your Garminfone to your computer using the USB cable provided in your box

3. Select "File Transfer" mode when the "USB connected" dialog appears


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Garmin Considers Exiting Phone Business-Yeah, Garmin Made A Phone

Garmin CFO Kevin Rauckman stated on the 9th that Garmin may be leaving the mobile phone part of its business on the side of the highway. Garmin has released exactly one Android phone that was met with limited success, to put it nicely. They released the Garminphone with an outdated version of Android and put it on the 4th largest (out of 4) wireless carrier in the US (T-Mobile). The cards were definitely not stacked in their favor.


At one point in time, I'm sure this phone would have been a break-away hit but, now that every phone has GPS navigation, the Garminphone has become completely irrelevant.

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Slow Garminfone Sales Prompt T-Mobile To Lower Price From $199.99 To $129.99

T-Mobile has been forced to lower the price of the Garminfone as a result of very weak demand - analyst estimates peg the number sold around 20,000. The phone was priced at $199.99, a price most reviewers agreed was too high for a phone with relatively weak specs:

  • 600 Mhz processor
  • 3.5” screen
  • 3 MP camera
  • 2GB microSD card
  • Android 1.6 with no word on an upgrade
  • Focus on navigation capabilities

Those in the market for an Android device were able to either get a more powerful phone for the same price, or an equally capable one for substantially less. Either way, the Garminfone had little in the way of economic appeal.

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UPDATED: Navigate Your Way To A Garminfone On June 9th

Update 05/26/2010: Well, as legit as the picture that Engadget posted looked, it seems that it was incorrect. I recieved an email this afternoon from T-Mobile announcing the availability of the Garminfone for $199.99 after a 2 year contract on June 9th. Seems all other details remain the same. You can view more information on the Garminfone here.

Sorry for the punny title – that actually hurt a bit to write. So, it seems that Engadgets received a fairly credible picture announcing that the Garminfone (did they really have to call it the ‘Garminfone’? I keep typing ‘phone’) should be available on June 2nd for the rumored $199 price point – as long as you’re OK with a 2 year contract.

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Garmin-Asus' Garminfone Reviewed, Is It A Solid Entry? [With Video]

The Garminfone is coming to T-Mobile very soon, so in order to help us figure out whether it is just a useless and superfluous toy or a candidate for your next phone/gadget, Engadget grabbed a review unit and put it to the test.

The Highlights

You can read the full review or if you want just the most important highlights, you can read the bullet points I handcrafted below, followed by a video and some photos:

  • Garminfone is coming to T-Mobile in June for $199
  • It has a 600MHz processor, a 3.5" capacitive screen, a 3MP camera, a 2GB microSD card, and runs Android 1.6, unlikely to be upgraded to 2.0+ any time soon, if ever, due to heavy customizations in the UI
  • if it's not obvious from the pictures, there is no physical keyboard
  • according to Engadget, Garminfone is the best mix of PND (portable navigation device) and smartphone to date
  • the phone is quite similar in build quality, size, and shape to Garmin G60, aka Nuvifone, which was running a custom Garmin OS and never ended up being too successful
  • there is no headphone jack… WHAT??
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T-Mobile To Ship Garminfone In June For $199

If you've been waiting for Garmin's half-GPS/half-Android-phone (phonotaur?) Garminfone to drop, you now won't have to wait too much longer.

According to Engadget, T-Mobile is going to start shipping this highly originally named device in June for a relatively steep price of $199.

Update: T-Mobile's garminfone site is now available:


Considering that a superior EVO 4G is rumored to have the same price tag, the Garminfone deal may seem like a steal to only the most directionally challenged of us. Yes, EVO 4G will run on Sprint, but if you want to stick to T-Mobile, why not get a similarly superior Nexus One instead?

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Real-life Photos Of The Garminfone Spotted For Those Of Us Who Are Directionally Challenged

A number of real-life photos of the new Android-powered Garmin phone, called Garminfone just got leaked to With the full Garmin navigational experience loaded into the phone, Garminfone is clearly directed towards those of us that may be directionally challenged.

Let's have a look, shall we? Here are the most interesting of the leaked pictures:

Garminfone Garminfone

Garminfone Garminfone Garminfone

Here’s their initial impression:

With just a few shots we get a quick glance at what we honestly expect to be just a moderate Android device…with no real “wow” factor.

For those that may have missed what makes this phone so special (which is nothing), below is an excerpt from the features, specifically the key Garmin-related features.

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