I'm using Linux Mint 19.1 and before I installed gvfs-backends, I was unable to browse my windows LAN from Nemo. I would get this error: Could not display "network:///". Nemo cannot handle "network" locations.
gvfs-backends is required for the network:// folder to work. Without this, you cannot browse your local network groups and servers!
Installed to try to gain access to a difficult (near impossible) android phone which seems to be undetectable under linux mint 18 ... so, I cannot say if it worked or not for others, just not for me.