Based on me trying to learn new things on this Louvre trip, I thought I would pay the €5 for the audio guide. That in itself is a big step for me – normally I prefer to listen to Mumford and Sons while making wild assumptions about the art at hand. But here I was, paying money to listen to things.
I returned the sodding thing after ten minutes. It was the worst audio guide I have ever had the displeasure to use. So to the review…
Type: the Louvre uses Nintendo DS as audio guide
Weight: who in their right mind wants to carry the weight of a Nintendo DS round their neck for hours? Every tourist there already has a camera draped across them, so normally the goal is to make the audio guide as light as possible… not so much here.
Usability: in the age of iPhones I expect to be able to understand new technology in about ten seconds. But even as someone who has owned a DS before I found this system bamboozling. Yes I could see myself on a map, but I couldn’t see the entire map and seriously struggled to find the button to hear any art speak. When I grumpily returned the thing the man at the desk said “oh but its simple” and proceeded to press about ten buttons to get to the right place … not simple at all.
Features: The big selling point is that the Nintendo DS does 3D, so you can see the art in 3D… THE ART IS RIGHT IN FRONT OF YOU AND IN 3D YOU TOOL.
Verdict: Normally art galleries try to get people to step away from technology and look at the art, the Louvre has managed to create mindless DS drones that don’t even notice the stuff on the walls.
Don’t waste your money.