Less some hiccups, most of which were found through trial and error and most of which I blame on the machine core and the operating system, the WorldNav software applications included in the unit function smoothly.
And even when process or access timeouts are obvious, the navigation screen will get refreshed and carry on with its task.
A closer look at the primary navigation software application will be provided in Part Four.
This section focuses on the other software applications and tools included in the WorldNav 3500 GPS that can be used by the owner.
Some configuration settings and functional steps are also provided to provide more insight into the specific applications, which in turn should translate into more efficient and effective use of everything the WorldNav GPS 3500 system provides.
Besides the Navigation application, which is the primary function of the WorldNav 3500 GPS, the software application suite included in the WorldNav 3500 GPS also includes:
Settings: For configuring specific settings and features.
GPS: For satellite/time information, signal strength and current position.
Music: Standalone music player, supports WMA, MP3 and WAV formats.
Movie (Video): Standalone media player, supports AVI, ASF, MOV and MPG formats.
E-book: Standalone reader, supports viewing of the text-based E-book format only.
Picture (Photo): Standalone application, supports JPG, PNG and BMP formats.
Bluetooth: Specific feature, supports supplied headset only.
I’ll cover each of these applications in more detail.
WorldNav 3500 Settings
The Setting screen displays six icons:
Zone: Time zone to be used, 12 or 24 hour standard, (vice GPS time).
Preferences: Brings up four smaller preference icons on bottom line for settings, including Language selection for navigation and instructions; Backlight settings; Power settings for automatic shut-off (when on battery); and Sound On or Off.
Date and Time: Clock and calendar settings.
Sys Info: Software, flash memory and device ID.
Calibration: For the touch-screen.
USB Setting: For charging or online (data) connectivity.
GPS Specific and general GPS information is always available by running the separate GPS application, a feature that provides more information to the user than some other systems.
As desired the user can check GPS signal strength, current position (latitude/longitude), altitude, speed (if moving) and current satellite-time (UTC or Coordinated Universal Time) information.
A feature that may come in handy from time to time is “GPS Reset”; when used it clears current satellite connections and initiates a new session.
WorldNav 3500 GPS – Media Services Applications
The Music, Movie, E-book and Picture programs function like most Microsoft Windows CE-based applications. As such the user has the basic tools for searching folders, opening files, etc.
The E-book feature only reads text (.txt extension) based books or similar files whereas the other media applications support multiple formats, something not found in all products within this market segment.
There are many E-book available on the internet for free or for purchase but the user needs to make sure the right format is saved and loaded into the WorldNav 3500.
Being able to play music files with WMA, MP3 and WAV formats represents versatility but as the audio output streamed from the device to the headset is single channel don’t expect helmet-filling music.
Also supporting multiple formats is the WorldNav 3500 Video player. It plays AVI, ASF, MOV, MP4, WMV and 3GP (wireless network/third generation multimedia standard). On the downside however it suffers from memory and horsepower issues.
Any file other than a low resolution video (.avi works the best) brings the application to its knees with buffering and time-outs commonplace.
More typically a message that reads “Application GPS.exe encountered a serious error and must shut down” is displayed, requiring a hot reset using the appropriate button on the back of the device.
Thankfully the system recovers quickly, allowing the user to move on to something else…
The WorldNav 3500 photo viewer works well; it successfully reads and displays photos in the .jpg, .png and .bmp formats from the removable memory card. The application has the basic tools allowing the image to be manipulated in various ways.
When travelling light, being able to use the WorldNav device to review pictures and video, listen to music and read an E-book is good.
But between performance issues and single channel audio, the media services do not measure up when compared to the multifaceted navigation application.
From Applications to Navigation
With this short introduction into WorldNav 3500 system applications and general settings, it is now time to see how the navigation software with its multitude of features and tools can be used to get oneself lost, or found, depending on which direction one wants to take of course!