Laser FD-250 (GPS for Dummies)
Good value portable navigational unit
- Simple UI, decent features list, reasonable navigational performance
- Touch screen's lack of responsiveness, cheap look and feel, below average display
The FD-250 has most of the basics and a few extra features that will serve you well, but the lack of responsiveness of the touch screen is an issue.
Price$ 229.95 (AUD)
Laser's FD-250 is a simple in-car GPS solution designed with convenience and ease of use in mind. Although the user interface is reasonably well designed, the responsiveness of the unit's touch screen is a major issue.
The design of the FD-250 is as simple as they come. The casing is a combination of matte rubber on the front and a black plastic rear. Though we appreciate the design's simplicity, the FD-250 does tend to feel cheap alongside most competitors.
Marketed as a 'GPS for Dummies' device, the FD-250 has a fairly straightforward interface. Unfortunately, the display is somewhat mediocre, with a poor viewing angle and reflectivity in sunlight being two of its issues. However, the main issue is the responsiveness of the touch screen. This is best described as hit and miss — at times, the screen requires a forceful tap to make a selection and this is extremely frustrating.
The issue with touch-screen response is a shame, as the interface lives up to the unit's GPS for Dummies name. In the main navigation menu and most submenus there are large, clearly labelled selection boxes for most options. Searching for an address is effortless, and there are plenty of options in this regard. The FD-250 allows searches by city first, street first, intersections and postcodes. Conveniently, when you select a suburb, the street names are filtered to quickly narrow down your search.
In addition to searching for an address, you can also search for places or points of interest. Options include POIs near your current location and POIs in another city; you can also search these via name using the on-screen keyboard. Once you've entered your destination, you are then able to avoid roads, make a detour, or plan a multi-stop trip.
The general navigational experience of the FD-250 is solid, and we were extremely impressed with start-up times. The unit often took less than 30 seconds to find a GPS signal. Re-routing times are also good, taking just a few seconds in most instances.
Voice commands are reasonable, though volume is an issue — even at its highest setting we would have preferred the volume to be much louder. We liked the text-to-speech technology, although the voice does struggle with long street names. The lack of external volume controls is a slight annoyance, but the volume icon on the map screen somewhat compensates for this.
The FD-250 ships with NAVTEQ Australian maps, which are stored on the unit's 512MB SD card. They can be zoomed in and out of easily using the + and - controls on the touch screen, and you can select either a 3-D or 2-D view. Tapping the bar at the bottom of the map cycles through the displayable options, including the current road, kilometres travelled and current speed. Red light cameras, fixed speed cameras and school zone alerts are all included.
In addition to its navigational capabilities, the FD-250 also includes a multimedia player, eBook reader and photo viewer, with files playable from the SD card. These features are very basic, but the large controls on the touch screen make them relatively straightforward to use.
Join the PC World newsletter!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Google Pixel XL full, in-depth smartphone review: Phones just got smarter
- 2 Sony Xperia XZ review: turbo-charged last-gen phone
- 3 Sony X9300D and X8500D UHD 4K TV review
- 4 Hisense Series 7 ULED 4K UHD TV review
- 5 Moto X Force review: Leading features from a mid-range phone
Latest News Articles
- Early iPhone 7 reviews: You'll miss the headphone jack, but the camera and battery life are tops
- Watch out: iOS 10 install is reportedly bricking some iPhones
- Google's Pixel Launcher leak hints at the demise of the Nexus brand
- It's official: iOS 10 launches with huge improvements to iMessage, Apple Music, Siri, and more
- Samsung is prepping a software update to cap Note7 charging to 60 percent
GGG Evaluation Team
First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.
For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.
The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.
The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.
My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.
- Google Pixel XL full, in-depth smartphone review: The new best Android phone
- Japan Robot, gadget and car expo slideshow
- Panasonic DX900U UHD 4K smart TV review: Best all-round TV ever?
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?
- CCAnalyst Programmer (12-month renewable Contract)Asia
- FTJava DeveloperNSW
- CCContract Programmer (JAVA/J2EE/SQL) 161018/P/911Asia
- CCService Desk ConsultantTAS
- CCNetwork AdministratorVIC
- TPJava Developer -- ContractWA
- CCBPM ConsultantNSW
- FTWebSphere MQ Application SupportNSW
- CCSenior Front End DeveloperNSW
- TPSoftware EngineerWA
- CCContract IT Assistant (Office Automation) 161031/ITA/541Asia
- FTMicrosoft Dynamics AX Functional Consultant Advanced Warehouse ManagementQLD
- CCDigital Project ManagerNSW
- CCSecurity Architect (Identity Access Management) - Finance - Contract - SydneyCBDNSW
- CCSenior / Lead UX DesignerNSW
- CCInfrastructure & Security Solution ArchitectVIC
- TPNetwork and Voice EngineerVIC
- CCCloud Security Services SpecialistVIC
- CCContract Programmer (.Net/SQL) 161027/P/vhaAsia
- FTAndroid Technical Lead (Work From Home 2-3 Days)NSW
- FTDynamics CRM DeveloperSA
- CCImplementation ManagerVIC
- CCMultiple Defence Opportunities - NV2ACT
- FTEnterprise Database Manager - Defence - Permanent - Sydney CBDNSW