Garmin Nuvi 205W long term review

I’ve been using the Garmin sat nav for more than 5 months now and its a very useful piece of equipment for your car. A lot of people have asked me why I need navigation in a small place like Kuwait but its not the size of the place that matters, rather how quickly you can get to a spot without getting lost or having to stop to ask directions.

First of all you need to update the map on your device,
1. To do that you’ll have to register your device,
2. Install Garmin communicator on your PC
3. Update/install the latest map version
There’s a Garmin Kuwait portal that will load the latest 2010 map onto your device, as far as I’ve seen its 99 % accurate except in areas wheres there’s new roads or traffic medians being constructed.

One useful file you might want to download is the Speed Camera POI (Point of Interest) file. Just copy this into the POI folder on your GPS and enable alerts for that POI. Each time you drive towards a traffic camera or speed camer it will beep and alert you.

Speed camera POI [link]

The GPS device also comes into good use for the following;
. Locating houses in residential areas, tested it out in Mishref, Mangaf and Qurain, works perfectly.
. Finding a gas station when you’re running out of fuel in an unfamiliar place
. Locating fast food places or shops
. Lets you know the speed limit for the road you’re currently driving on

Now although many locations are not mapped in the navteq map, you can add spots using the coordinates from Wikipedia, Wikimapia and Google Earth. What you should be looking for are the Latitude and Longitude coordinates and once you enter this into your device it quickly draws a route to that location.

Last weekend I had to attend a cultural program at ICSK Khaitan. As I wasn’t sure of the location I searched it in Wikimapia and entered the coordinates into the device. It led me right in front of the school without any problems. I’ve done the same for other locations as well and its worked fine so far. I’ve marked out the steps below;


search location on wikimapia



Select desired location from result list



Confirm location



copy coordinates and input into your device



GPS draws route to destination


Other details:

Battery Life: A couple of times I left the GPS unplugged from the charger during long drives and it lasted me under a week under normal conditions. Its better to leave it plugged in though coz then it will turn on and off automatically whenever your turn off or turn on the ignition.

Screen response: It uses a resistive touch screen so the actual touching is a little different from that of an iPhone. You do have to press gently for it to register a touch.

Animation and Sound quality: I compared my friend’s G-Hanz device with mine and the Garmin feels a lot more upmarket than G-Hanz. There’s no delay in drawing new routes and the sound is crisp and sharp.

Customization: There are a variety of sounds to choose from, you also change the icon for the car or vehicle and even change the start-up picture to match the brand of car you’re driving.

All in all this piece of kit is a must-have for your car.

6 Replies to “Garmin Nuvi 205W long term review”

  1. Dear Mathai, Can you pls email me the dealer details in Kuwait? I would also like to know the price details of this device.



    1. Meso: Garmin dealer is situated in Shuwaikh behind City Center, near Tilal Complex. AlGhanim also sells Garmin devices.
      You’ll have to contact them for the price details as I got mine as a gift and don’t know how much it cost.

  2. Mathai,

    Is this like a detachable/ portable device? I mean do I need to have anything installed inside the car itself?



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