Garmin's nuvi 256W and 256WT are automotive GPS units that are virtually identical, save for the traffic receiver and lifetime traffic subscription that is included with the nuvi 256WT. The nuvi 256W is also compatible with traffic services, but it does not include a traffic receiver or a traffic subscription.
Both the nuvi 256W and the nuvi 256WT have the same size 4.3-inch widescreen touch-sensitive 480-by-272-pixel display. They support SD cards that can store additional maps, personal location information, or pictures, and they both support text to speech instructions, which enable them to speak the names of approaching streets or locations while giving driving directions. An internal Bluetooth receiver links the GPS unit to your phone, so you can make and receive calls with the touch screen display. They both also have built-in lithium-ion batteries that allow them to operate for up to four hours without being plugged in.
The nuvi 256WT includes a lifetime subscription to Garmin's traffic services. It displays real-time traffic data on its map and factors traffic into drive-time estimates. You can set the 256WT to autoroute around all traffic congestion or to find the shortest route even if it means going through traffic. The nuvi 256W also supports traffic services, however, it cannot access these services unless you purchase a traffic subscription for the device. As of April 2011, Garmin sells lifetime traffic subscriptions for North America for £32.40.
Garmin traffic updates are broadcast over FM radio. To receive these updates, Garmin units need a FM receiver. The 256WT includes a receiver for accessing these updates. The 256W is compatible with Garmin's GTM 35FM receiver. As of April 2011, Garmin sells the unit for £77.90 with a lifetime traffic subscription. With the GTM 35 receiver and lifetime traffic updates, the 256W is equivalent to the 256WT.
As of April 2011, the nuvi 256W has been officially discontinued, although Garmin still manufactures and sells the nuvi 256WT for £142.9.
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