Garmin’s nuvi 3790T and 3790LMT are an evolutionary jump in portable navigation systems design which has been recognized for its appeal with a 2010 Red Dot Product Design Award. They are truly pocket sized (8.7 mm thick) and weighted (4 ounces) for pedestrian navigation. The traditional plastic case is gone replaced with a brushed aluminum finish casing with smooth, stylish chrome edges. The metal casing along with the glass faced 4.3 inch display gives the Garmin nuvi 3790T a much sturdier feel than plastic. Overall the design and form factor can’t help but remind one of the latest iPhone 4.
The beauty of the both Garmin nuvi 3790 versions is not simply skin deep with the resistive touch display having been replaced with a capacitive, touch, color display (WVGA – 800×480 pixels). Along with the much more responsive display comes naturally intuitive gesture controls of the interface. Those familiar with one of the many capacitive screen smart phones and PDA on the market now would be familiar with finger pinches (for scaling), double tapping, dragging and twisting (perspective change). Naturally there is a screen lock to prevent inadvertent touches causing havoc.
The Garmin nuvi 3790LMT is identical to the nuvi 3790T apart from the addition of a lifetime map subscription. Map accuracy is essential for accurate route calculation and maintaining accuracy requires regular map data updates. The best and most economic way to ensure regular map updates (our recommendation) is to purchase a GPS navigator with a Lifetime Maps guarantee (covering four free updates a year) as comes with the 3790LMT. It is less expense and simpler than a string of separate purchases.
Multi-Touch Display – Garmin nuvi 3790T/LMT Video
Some other innovative features of the Garmin nüvi 3790T are
- Voice activation and navigation of the on-screen menus
- Garmin trafficTrends for improved routing recommendations
- Garmin myTrends for entryless route prediction
- Active suction cup mount – into which the power cord is plugged rather than the GPS unit itself
- Secondary speaker on the powered mount for higher quality sound
- Customizable wallpaper
- Ability to view, crop and save images on the nuvi
- Auto time zone allows nuvi to automatically adjust your time zone while navigating
- Buildings and Terrain in 3-D which includes representative 3D views of significant buildings and the surrounding terrain
Starting voice-activated navigation begins with a customizable wake-up phrase. Using voice commands to navigate menus improves safety by allowing the driver to keep his/her eyes on the road ahead.
Voice Control Video nuvi 3790T
Garmin trafficTrends and myTrends
Like TomTom’s IQ Routes technology, Garmin’s trafficTrends computes routes taking into account historical traffic data and identified recurring trends for any given time or day (eg. peak hour). This feature becomes more accurate as historical data accumulates from the data updates which piggyback software updates.
Garmin myTrends uses clues such as the time of day and location you turn on the GPS as well as guesstimate the initial destination based on one’s destination history. If you are a creature of habit this functionality could save a lot of time.
Navigating with the Garmin nuvi 3790T/LMT
The most notable method for entering destinations with the 3790T/3790LMT is voice commands. Apart from allowing the unit to guess (myTrends), one can enter an address via the touchscreen keyboard, browse favorites, recently used and manually browsing the map and double tapping a destination. Addresses for services, shops, ATMs and other such locations can be obtained by searching the large 6 million Points of Interest (POI) database. Customized POI can also be created and used. Geotagged photos of your own or downloaded from Garmin Connect Photos can also be used to select a destination. Maps can be viewed in either 2D or 3D perspective requiring only a simple finger gesture to switch – as can be seen in the video.
Complicated intersections can be difficult to navigate successfully when encountered for the first time. The 3790T/LMT has two useful features to assist; Lane Assist which indicates the correct lane to be in for and upcoming turn and Junction View which provides a larger, more detailed view of a junction.
Video – Using the Garmin nuvi 3790T/LMT
Customizing Routing Calculations
With the Garmin nuvi 3790T/LMT one can set preferences for how routes are determined using numerous available options such as; road type (avoid highways, tolls etc.), shorter distance, faster time, off road and less fuel. For business drivers on delivery runs there is a very useful capability to auto sort multiple destinations (up to 10) for the most efficient route.
When the less fuel option is chosen, Garmin’s new ecoRoute routing function determines routes for minimum fuel consumption. The sophisticated route calculation takes into consideration; fuel consumption rates, estimated driving speeds and vehicle acceleration data. Feedback from ecoRoute’s Fuel Report and Mileage Report can be used to develop more fuel efficient driving habits.
Built-in Traffic Receiver with Lifetime Traffic Subscription
For those who travel the same routes often the ability to have the GPS navigator plot a route around traffic jams can be a primary form of use. The Garmin nuvi 3790T and 3790LMT versions come with FM TMC (Traffic Message Channel) traffic receiver to deliver this service. TMC data provides quick, accurate notification of situations impacting traffic such as accidents, road construction, police and emergency services. Read our technical guide on FM Traffic for more detailed information. It might also be worth considering the advantages provided by Gamin’s new wireless 3G transmitter/receiver enabled nuLink! facility on the Garmin nüvi 1690 which delivers a number of live information services including: traffic, Google Local Search, White Pages, gas prices, Ciao!, weather, movie times and local events.
Pedestrian Navigation Mode
With their slim, light form factor the Garmin nuvi 3790T/LMT are ideal for pedestrian navigation use. If you intend on making good use of the pedestrian navigation mode it is recommended that your purchase the compatible cityXplorer maps for select cities throughout North America and Europe. They provide enhanced pedestrian navigation features including; directions for where to walk, where to catch the bus, subway, tram or other transportation. In some cities, transit schedules, such as subway or bus times, are available. It’s worth noting that the battery life of 4 hours needs to be managed when in pedestrian mode. Read our exploration of the benefits of GPS III and discover how the soon to be launched next generation of GPS satellites will significantly enhance pedestrian navigation.
Hands-Free Calling – Bluetooth Wireless Technology
Garmin nuvi 3790T/LMT users can keep their eyes safely on the road by making hands-free cellular calls utilizing Bluetooth technology. Incoming phone calls are displayed and a tap of the screen accepts the call. As with other systems, any other audio is automatically muted during phone calls. Calls can be made using the nuvi’s touchscreen keypad. A handy convenience is being able to access phone numbers associated with a POI making it simple to call ahead. Numbers from your personalized phone book can be dialed and you can even tap into your cell phone’s call history log.
Powered mount and Garmin Locate
The Garmin nuvi 3790’s power lead attaches to the mount instead of the unit itself. If you have ever left the miniUSB unplugged and tried to reach around the back of the nuvi in the mount and plug it in blind, then you will appreciate this design feature. This mounting arrangement facilitates Garmin Locate which is a feature where the nüvi 3790T, when removed from its cradle, will remember where you parked your car by automatically saving its position as a favorite. There is still a miniUSB port for charging while away from the car.
Numerous travel tools are included such as; a JPEG picture viewer, world travel clock with time zones, currency converter, measurement converter and calculator. Please note neither 3790 version plays audio (MP3) or audio book files. Photos and maps can loaded using the microSD slot.
Garmin Nuvi 3790T/LMT – In the Box
- nuvi 3790T/LMT
- Preloaded City Navigator NT North America (U.S. , Canada and Mexico) (maps vary with country of purchase
- Vehicle suction cup active mount
- FM Traffic Receiver with vehicle power cable
- USB cable
- Dashboard disc
- Quick start manual
The Garmin 3790T and 3790LMT versions are feature packed with a breakthrough form factor for improved pedestrian navigation convenience. The gorgeous, intuitive capacitance display is an envy magnet. Our recommendation is to purchase the 3790LMT version for the peace of mind and savings of lifetime map updates.
Garmin 3790T/LMT Resources
User Reviews and Price Comparisons
Use the following links to check prices and read what customers think of their Garmin nuvi 3790T purchase.