The Medion GoPal E3410 is a mid-range satnav device that is well worth your consideration.

There are many features that satnav manufacturers bundle into devices such as the Medion GoPal E3410 and, while some trinkets just bump up the price, others are nice little sweeteners – although you probably already own most of these features as standalone devices (you may well have come across such devices as 'MP3 player', 'mobile phone', 'camera' and 'organiser' before).

The paramount thing you should be looking out for when choosing a satnav is number-one. That's you: your security and your safety.

So, we were quite excited when a press release announcing the inclusion of fingerprint technology in Medion's satnav line-up landed on our desk – we'd not seen one of those before.

Unfortunately, we still haven't; of the two newly-released Medion models, only the £299 GoPal P4425 supports this exciting feature. Shame. But there are plenty of other ways that the Medion GoPal E3410 attempts to keep you safe and secure.

Since it's not the best idea to be fiddling with anything while you're on the road, such features as a text-to-speech engine and voice recognition for destination input will help keep fingers on the wheel and eyes on the road.

Which is handy, given that once it's in the (rather bulky) cradle accessing the Medion GoPal E3410's stylus can be a little fiddly – although not inaccessible. The voice technology is only as flawless as your voice is clear, but a little practice improves matters no end.

Bluetooth hands-free calls is another feature we were pleased to see but wouldn't necessarily expect in a device with a £190 price tag. If you have a compatible phone then this is one way to get around receiving three points on your licence and a £60 fine.

Free TMC reports are included with the Medion GoPal E3410, while the preloaded safety-camera database will cost you £7.50 per year for updates.

Medion claims a battery life of four to five hours for the Medion GoPal E3410, which is plenty for most journeys. Usefully, Medion also bundles a mains adaptor (unlike some well-known satnav manufacturers we could mention).

But if you were thinking that the Medion GoPal E3410 might be the driver's best friend, think again. Once on the road you can hardly fault the GoPal, but getting there takes more than a few trips around the block. Indeed, you'll find many of the usual setup options and, kindly, Medion has added 'Economic' to the usual 'Fast' and 'Short' route options.

It has also added the option of swapping the standard keypad for a mobile phone-style one; the point of which, we aren't entirely sure. There seems to be an abundance of settings screens and it's difficult to get back to the main menu once you've entered navigation mode, but otherwise the software interface is pretty intuitive.

NEXT PAGE: the horrors of destination input, and our expert verdict > >

For news and reviews on the best technology on the move, visit Mobile Advisor.

The Medion GoPal E3410 is a mid-range satnav device that is well worth your consideration.

Our biggest horror, however, was the destination input. Once you've first used the Medion GoPal E3410, the buttons that once requested the input of a postcode, street or city instead display the particulars of your last route. (Rather than watching the road, you're probably now thinking "What the...") We never worked out how to reset this, although pressing these buttons still gives the same options. Multistop trip planning is another glaring omission for the Medion GoPal E3410.

The Medion GoPal E3410's build is nicely compact and will be easy to slip away out of sight, but its smaller than standard 3.5in touchscreen can cause problems with difficult to read text during navigation.

For news and reviews on the best technology on the move, visit Mobile Advisor.

Medion GoPal E3410: Specs

  • Navteq Western European maps
  • Medion GoPal 3.0 PE software
  • Centrality Atlas III processor
  • 1.5GB memory
  • 3.5in colour TFT touchscreen
  • Bluetooth
  • TMC
  • safety-camera alerts
  • voice engine
  • MP3 player
  • photo viewer
  • video player
  • alarm clock
  • SD/MMC slot takes cards up to 2GB
  • includes car cradle and mains adaptor
  • stylus
  • four- to five-hour battery life
  • 99x85x21mm
  • 160g
  • Navteq Western European maps
  • Medion GoPal 3.0 PE software
  • Centrality Atlas III processor
  • 1.5GB memory
  • 3.5in colour TFT touchscreen
  • Bluetooth
  • TMC
  • safety-camera alerts
  • voice engine
  • MP3 player
  • photo viewer
  • video player
  • alarm clock
  • SD/MMC slot takes cards up to 2GB
  • includes car cradle and mains adaptor
  • stylus
  • four- to five-hour battery life
  • 99x85x21mm
  • 160g

OUR VERDICT

It's easy to criticise a device with a few half-hearted features up its sleeve, but not when that device costs just £190. We were pleasantly impressed with the Medion GoPal E3410; it's certainly a mid-range model worthy of consideration – providing that your patience can withstand its unusual route input method.

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