On the Road With the Nokia 6110

Convergence is a hard nut to crack. I have yet to meet anyone who uses their cellphone as an MP3 player — although they’re out there — and now Nokia wants us to use their phones as GPS devices.

I’m pleased to report that their solution, embedded on the slim 6110, is quite nice. They use Route 66 software to offer a compelling reason to stick your phone to your dashboard.

I got to ride around with the 6110 today and it led us through the twisty little streets of Barcelona. The device is about as big as the N80, their Symbian slider, and has dual speakers on the back that shout out directions. There are multiple views — including a “night” view that creates a negative of the map and lights up only the route you’re on. The instructions were quite exact and the GPS load time was considerably faster than I expected, considering the size.

One very interesting feature is a “Pedestrian” setting which allows you to carry the bugger around town like a mini-map. That would have been particularly useful while I wandered around town last night looking for my hotel.

In terms of convergence, this is probably spot on. I would replace a standalone GPS device with this phone if only because it offers so much in such a tiny package. At about $400 — with no U.S. availability in sight — we’ll probably have a wait a bit until we can consult a mobile instead of Fodor’s 15 Sex Tours in Souther France.