SatNavs have come on in leaps and bounds in the past few years. The 255WT is no exception.
I have experience with a wide range of makes and models of SatNavs, and units from Garmin always come out top when compared to similar priced products from other manufacturers. They're solid, reliable, and easy to use.
After purchasing this unit, I immediately discovered I was eligible for the 2009 map updates which I downloaded from Garmin's website and installed easily. This took a long time as it was nearly 3GB in size, but was worth it.
I have also installed three firmware updates with absolutely no problems. Other people have had problems (usually due to not following the instructions), but installing a new firmware on any electronic device is always risky, and usually optional. Just take your time, follow the instructions, and most importantly give it time to finish rebooting afterwards, and all will be well. If you do break it, then give Garmin a call on their free number and they'll email you a program to fix it.
Instead of the Speed Camera data from Garmin, I chose to continue using the PocketGPSWorld speedcamera database as it seems to be considered to be the best and most up to date. For all I know Garmin may very well source there data from the same place - I never tried it. The speed camera locations, along with a nice selection of other custom data sets I use, are very easy to load into the unit using the standard Point of Interest (POI) Loader from Garmin's website.
The unit is very fast compared to other GPS units. If it has been used for a reasonable amount of time within the last few days then it can get a satellite fix in literally a couple of seconds using AGPS/Hotfix technology. The sensitivity of the unit is excellent, and even works indoors and in multi-story car parks. It works fine through the special coated glass you get on some cars (such as Peugeots) too - other units can have a problem with this. It calculates routes quicker than any other unit I've used.
The FM Traffic receiver is a really cool new feature. You can see the location of all the traffic congestion on major A roads and motorways, and the unit will automatically route around any congestion or traffic jams if a faster route is available. The downside of this system is coverage. North of Newcastle, as best as I can tell, there are only two transmitters - one in Glasgow and one in Edinburgh. As the signal is transmitted on local FM radio stations the range is the same. In other words, currently, north of Newcastle, coverage is very limited, but I'd imagine it will increase as time goes on. Of course, coverage is not related to the unit itself, so I won't mark the review down for this. The FM Traffic receiver is built into the power cable, and comes with a short wire that plugs into it, and two suckers. This is its antenna. The receiver seems to work fine without it though so I'd consider it optional.
The other new feature for me is the Photo Navigation. Some newer digital cameras record the location where the image was taken. Also there are various websites (e.g. Panoramio) that store the location of images. You can download up to 50 per day of these pictures from Garmin's website, for locations anywhere in the world, then view them on the unit and navigate to them just like any other address.
I do have two gripes. Directly comparing it to my older Garmin C320 which is now three years old, the sound is nowhere near as good. It seems tinnier, but it's still clear. My second grips is the window suction mount. With my older unit, all I had to do was push the unit back into the mount and it would clip into place and be connected to the power lead. One the new unit, you have to manually plug the tiny USB lead (this is actually the power and FM Traffic receiver) into the back of the unit before clipping the unit onto the mount. This means it takes a fiddly 15 seconds at best, and a frustratingly long time if it's dark. With my old unit it took a second, if that, as the mount had the connector built in.
If you just want a SatNav with UK maps (i.e. not all of Europe too) then consider the 205WT as it's exactly the same unit other than the maps, and slightly cheaper.
Overall, this SatNav is very good, fast, reliable, well built, bright clear screen, ok sound, and is aware of real-time traffic congestion on major roads - so long as you can pick up the FM traffic signal (south of Newcastle has good coverage). I'd have given it 5 stars had the suction mount had a built-in power/FM traffic connector.
Some other things it does:
* Automatically activates night-time viewing mode when the sun sets.
* Boots up in around 10 seconds.
* Can use SD cards for additional storage (photos, that's about it).
* Depending on last use, has a satellite lock in 2 seconds.
* Car, Bicycle, and Pedestrian modes.
* Miles or kilometres.
* QWERTY or alphabetical keyboard.
* Choice of fastest time, shortest distance, or off road.
* Optionally avoid U-Turns, Motorways, Toll Roads, Traffic congestion, Ferries, Car Share Lanes, Unpaved Roads.
* 12 hour, 24 hour, or UTC time.
* Loads of languages.
* Selectable map detail level.
* Various vehicle icons (more on Garmin website).
* 3D, Track Up, or North Up, map modes.
* Optional Lock Mode (need PIN if not at specified location).
* Optional Safe Mode (prevents use when vehicle is moving).
* FM TrafficMaster reception (real-time details of traffic congestion).
* Proximity alerts (e.g. Speed Cameras).
* Display Long/Lat, nearest address, junction, hospital, police, fuel.
* Built in help system.
* Picture viewer.
* Photo navigation.
* World Clock.
* World Map with Sunrise/sunset graph.
* Unit converter (area, currency, distance, speed, temperature, volume, weight).
* Navigate to an address (postcode and house number, address, street, road, etc).
* Navigate to Home location.
* Navigate to a pre-loaded Point of Interest (food, fuel, airport, bus station, car rental, lodging, grocery, pharmacy/chemist, shopping centre, speciality retail, bank/cash machine, parking, bar/nightclub, cinema, live theatre, air field, amusement/theme park, arena/track, bowling, golf, ice skating, park/garden, ski centre/resort, sport/fitness centre, hall/auditorium, landmarks, museum/historical, other, winery, hospitals, city hall, community centre, court, library, place of worship, police, post office, school, vehicle dealer/parts, roadside services, tourist info).
* Navigate to any additional custom point of interest available from numerous websites.
It should be noted that a USB lead is not supplied, but it uses one of the very common types of USB lead. However, I did notice that one of my USB leads did not work with it (it charged it, but it wouldn't connect to the computer) - most will work fine though. You will only need a USB lead if you want to update the firmware, update the maps, update the speed camera database, or upload your own points of interest.
Finally, the box contains the unit itself, windscreen suction mount, sticky dashboard mount, cigarette lighter power lead with built in FM Traffic receiver, antenna for FM Traffic receiver, suckers for FM Traffic Receiver antenna, quick start guide.