LEGO (in partnership with Digital Blue) releases a new mp3 player, shaped as a colorful brick and scheduled to hit your kids’ playground somewhere this summer for $39.99. The new audio toy comes with 2GB of storage and includes a small LCD screen to display playing songs together with their talented performers. Other than that, the brick can easily connect speedy USB 2.0 ports to let you transfer any MP3 or WMA files, while the bundled pair of earbuds will smoothly hook into the built-in 3.5mm Headphone Jack, so you won’t have to listen to Tweedledee and Tweedledum back and forth.
Online digital music market is getting warmed up, as US retail giant, Best Buy, announces it will acquire Napser for an astonishing $121 million price tag. The transaction is set to be accomplished in Q4 of this year and we have no doubt it was carried out in order to try snatching a substantial share from iTunes’ market dominance. Napster allows its 708,000 subscribers to access an unlimited library of music or using the “Napster Mobile” platform, on their mobile phones, for a small monthly fee of $15. Having said that, the company has never turned a profit, during its long years of existence.
Best Buy president Brian Dunn confirms the company’s desire to expand Napster services and to use “Napster’s capabilities and digital subscriber base to reach new customers with an enhanced experience for exploring and selecting music and other digital entertainment products over an increasing array of devices.” Be sure it’s just the beginning and we expect more developments to take place in the near future. We do hope this move will increase the competition and at the end of the day, will be profitable for the consumers.
iTunes 8 officially goes live at Apple’s “Let Us Rock” event, introducing HD shows from ABC, NBC and Showtime, to run for $2.99 per episode (the rest priced at $1.99). In addition, the 8 version comes with the new “Genius” sidebar feature, which lets you automatically create playlists from songs in your music library that go great together. Meaning, iTunes has a smart music reccomendation tool that helps users to rediscover favorite songs in their existing music library and suggests related music on the iTunes Store they might want to add to their music collection (sort of Pandora like). Furthermore, you can visualy browse your iTunes’ music / video libraries, using your album or video cover art and enjoy some new stunning Magnetosphere visualizations, once you turn your favorite music on. Tunes 8 is now available for download via Apple’s website.
Macally announces the release of the iVoicePro, a voice and audio recorder for your iPod, which supports iPod (5th Gen), iPod nano (2nd and 3rd Gen), and iPod classic devices. The new iVoicePro is equipped with a built-in microphone, an external speaker, LED status indicator, input mode switch, 3.5mm output jack and even a USB port to charge your players while recording stuff. Unfortunately, there’s no info concerning price or availability at the moment, but you can expect this one to go out soon.
Despite its bulky design, Newman tries to set a new storage mark for media players with the new M8000, coming up in 120GB/160GB or 250GB capacities. The PMP device features a 4-inch TFT screen (320 x 240), a built-in 1.3MP camera, a microphone, NES emulator support, video output and even PVR capabilities. It comes in black or white flavor and compatible with all basic file formats. Price range starts from $299 up to $388, respectively, so if you search for gigantic storage capacity to store all your music and movies on the go, it might be an adequate solution for you.
[via PMP Today]
I really like the new CD-T300 Pro, it has a unique illuminated “out of space” design and aluminum alloy body that turns it into a 2 ton heavy thing, well to be more accurate it weights “only” 24lbs, but you got the message – very heavy. The CD player is equipped with two remote controls, gold plated tube legs, and four amplification valves, but the most juicy piece of info is the $12,000 price tag, which makes the T300 unaffordable for most of us, so I guess I’d stay with the ipod after all.
If you’re a DJ or someone who wants to mix, scratch, pitch shift, beat match, crossfade, and even add special effects, all wirelessly, you can do it with the new Hercules Mobile DJ MP3 Controller that enables mixing and organizing stored computer tracks via wireless networks. This up-to-date DJ device is equipped with 2 jog wheels (emulating 2 CD/vinyl decks), 2 deck controller, 1 cross fader, 2 volume & pitch sliders, 25 control buttons and 2 backlit LCD screens that display artist, track name, BPM, elapsed time, or track length. In addition, it has “AutoMix” function that can automatically create the mix, as you seat on the couch, controlling the action with the on-board wireless USB. The Mobile DJ Controller supports MP3 and WMA formats, to seamlessly synchronize with your PC or laptop, so you can draw a nice party to your friends wherever you are. To get this cool DJ equipment, you can visit J&R stores and snack one for merely $99.
[Hercules via engadget]
The upcoming PS3 firmware update, will bring some substantial improvements to the game console. According to Sony, version 2.20, which is just days from launch, will feature Blu-ray spec 2.0 and BD-Live capabilities that include online downloading of video content, ringtones and interactive movies or audio. In addition, you will be able to copy to your PSP photos and music playlists via USB connection. The update will also add movies bookmarking function, so you can return back to the exact point and resume play from where you left off. Furthermore, “Audio Output Device” function will enable the PSP console to serve as a remote control for music played through the PS3. Check the full details after the break.
Update: users will be able to copy Blu-Ray movies directly from the PS3 to the PSP.
Update 2: update one turns to be untrue.
The guys at Megawhat.tv have decided to make a comparison between the two leading multimedia boxes, the Archos TV+ and the Apple TV. This head to head video, examine both devices on different categories such as movies, photos, music, streaming, outputs, inputs, GUI and more. The results are not conclusive and pretty much let you decide for yourself, according to your personal needs and flavors. Personally i prefer Apple’s GUI but reluctant with their format limitations. On the other hand, i do like the Archos TV+ and the ability to connect any box into it, so for me the best would probably be – Archapple TV. Check out the video here.
Mpio unveils the new MG200 mp3 player with a 1.5-inch OLED display and a Black or White sleek design. The MG200 is compatible with almost any current available format and might be a cheaper solution, as its price stands on less than $100. The player comes with 3 different Nand Flash storage sizes (1GB/2GB/4GB) and sports multi-language support.
- Display: 1.5″ OLED screen, 65,000 colors (128 × 128).
- Storage Size: 1GB, 2GB or 4GB.
- Audio: MP3, WMA, MPEG 1/2/2.5 Layer 3.
- Video: MTV, WMV, AVI, MPEG1, MPEG2.
- Pictures: JPEG, BMP, GIF.
- Features: SD card slot, USB 2.0, multi-lingual interface.
- Size: 39.1 × 10.8 x 85.6mm, 42gm.
Check the video after the break.
I guess it was just a matter of time for iPhone bands to start showing up, playing their own repertoire with their handset, now that the Cupertino phone received virtual piano and guitar applications. One of those bands is the iBand, presenting very impressive abilities, combined from 2 iPhone devices and 1 Nintendo DS. Check out the video:
Remember the Mylo 2, unveiled by Sony at the last CES show in Vegas? Turns out the $299.99 device is here, live and kicking. To refresh your memory, we are talking about a mini portable PMP with wireless connectivity and instant messaging support. Main parameters include 1 GB storage capacity, USB2.0 interface, video playback MPEG-4, MPEG-4 AVC/H.264, video encoding, audio player supports MP3, WMA, ACC, ATRAC, etc, photo supports JPEG, PNG, BMP, and more. Other parameters feature a 3.5-inch touchscreen with 800 x480 screen resolution and a 1.3MP camera. As i mentioned before, i really like this device, though it is a little bulky to carry on the go.
Check out the video and the pictures after the break.
Sumvision unveils the ICE1000, a mini PMP with a 2.8″ touchscreen. It seems everyone wants to have their own touch device and the iPod Touch is the one to set the rally. We’re not so sure this is the right killer but the market votes for the buttons-less players. With a clean design, the Ice1000 might be just the cheaper alternative. Check out the specs:
- Display: 2.8″ TFT LCD (320 × 240).
- Storage Size: 4GB internal flash memory.
- Audio: MP3, WMA.
- Video: MP4, WMV, XviD, AVI.
- Pictures: JPEG, RSC, TXT.
- Features: microSD slot, FM radio tuner, a microphone, USB 2.0, external speaker, e-book reader, 7 EQ, multi-language interface.
- Battery Life: audio-10 hours, video-4 hours.
- Size: 90 × 55 x 12mm, 62 gm.
- Price: $88.00.
Onkyo unveils new PC lineup, designed as Hi-Fi stereo systems. The new APX-2 HD PC sports an advanced digital audio amplifier and Pure Direct Audio Path, allowing you to play high-quality HD Audio tunes, without any audio lost, caused by vista filtering drivers. Other features include:
- Processor: Intel 1.66GHz Core 2 Duo T5500.
- Memory: 1GB RAM.
- Storage Size: 500GB stored in a Super Floating HDD Unit with noise cancellation box.
- Price: Not Available
Unfortunately, the new PCs are not available outside Japan, so if you get a chance to drop by, pick one and bring it to us for a first impression.
E-Light is an indoor/outdoor entertainment light, featuring high-output LED lights, providing 6 – 12 hours of glowing illumination. This cordless light clamps onto your umbrella pole for a convenient outdoor decoration or indoor design. The E-Light has a standard headphone jack, allowing you to connect your iPods and listen to your favorite music via acoustically balanced stereo speakers, delivering high-quality sound. The E-Light comes with 4 AA NiMH rechargeable batteries and you can get yours for $99.50.
This mysterious teaser snappily appeared on PS3 official site for a very short time, alluding messaging capabilities support for the game console. If this info is real, and we assume it is, PS3 users finally get voice and video chat services, allowing them to connect with their friends whenever they pop up online or during a game. The sneaky image reads “Talk to others during game play, say hello anytime you’re online, or have a video chat with an Eye camera; USB Camera or headset.” Hopefully, Sony is going to embed the messaging services in the next firmware update, so here’s a very good reason to anticipate the next version.
Apple TV Take II gets new features, as Cupertino announces the release of a new freebie update, including the following specs:
- A built-in music store.
- Access to Flickr photostreams and Mac Web Galleries.
- Movie rentals service with HD support.
- Podcasts downloading.
- Automatic software update.
Additionally, Apple uploaded to their website a guided tour of the Apple TV Take II , including the latest updates. Enjoy the tour with Hannah.
Sony Ericsson announces the release of the XPERIA X1 quad-band GSM/EDGE and 900/1700/1900/2100MHz UMTS/HSDPA/HSUPA, combined with a full QWERTY keyboard for maximum Windows Mobile 6 operating system control. The XPERIA X1 multimedia mobile sports the following features:
- Display: 3″ TFT VGA touchscreen, 65,536 color (800 x 480).
- OS: Windows Mobile 6.
- Internal Memory: up to 400MB with microSD extension.
- Control: 4-way key plus optical joystick.
- Camera: 3.2MP with photo light and video recording.
- Internet: Internet Explorer Mobile, RSS feed.
- Connectivity: Modem, WLAN, WiFi, aGPS and A2DP Bluetooth .
- Microsoft Outlook Mobile, SMS/MMS and Video calling support.
- Music: Integrated Windows Media Player Mobile with PlayNow support and FM radio tuner.
- Video: Video viewing, Video streaming and 3D games.
- Other Features: Personal organizer, Java support, Speakerphone and more.
- Dimensions: Size: 110 x 53 x 16.7mm, 145gm.
- Colors: Silver, Black
- Availability: second half of 2008.
- Price: Unknown.
Check out the video after the break.
Toshiba announces an update release for its Gigabeat lineup, including the Gigabeat V81, T802, U407 and U408 players.
Gigabeat V81 (Replacing the V41 model)
- Display: 3.5″ LCD TFT screen (320×240).
- TV Tuner: 1Seg (Japanese digital signal).
- Storage: 8GB.
- Audio: WMA , Lossless, MP3, WAV.
- Video: AVI, WMV.
- Pictures: JPEG.
- Features: portable digital TV, USB 2.0, SD slot.
- Battery: audio – 40 hours, video – 13 hours, broadcasting – 10 hours.
- Size: 115 x 75 x 14.2 mm 168gm
- Price: $330. Available in Japan from this month.
A week after we’ve reported the announcement of the Nuvifone by Garmin, the company released two commercial videos that gives you a glimpse to what they call the new revolution. Though the following promo videos ain’t the greatest we have seen, they expose us to some of the applications the Nuvifone features but it’s not enough and we expect some improved presentations to be released.
Check out the video.
Another video after the break.