Remember Cowon’s S9 PMP that was first introduced at IFA 2008 in Berlin? Turns out it will make a debut in Korea on December 16th in 4GB / 8GB / 16GB versions, for 219,000 won ($150), 259,000 won ($178), or 309,000 won ($213), respectively. Truth to tell, we were skeptical about this one, specially after discernible delays in the European launch and due to the lack of information concerning a US release. However, Cowon has proved it can live up to its promis and according to yesterday’s official announcement, the Korean company will deliver the goods, despite some “problems in production”. In other words, we are expected to see the S9 player landing on western shelves, somewhere around the beginning of 2009.
In any case, this stylish curvy 3.3-inch AMOLED touchscreen player boasts some impressive specs, including a strong Dual Core processor, an FM tuner, T-DMB tuner, A2DP Bluetooth 2.0 connection, a TV output and even a G-Sensor accelerometer (probably for future games). Furthermore, it supports MP3, WMA, OGG, FLAC, WAV audio formats and MPEG-4 SP, WMV9 SP, H.264 BP video formats, while the battery provides up to 55hrs of audio playback or 11hrs of video playback.
Additionally, first GUI screen shots imply for a wide range of usability, and plenty of touchscreen features that Cowon plans to bring into the S9, as some of them resemble the iPod touch and some carry their own identity. Stay tuned for more to come.
Update1: checkout the new video and full specs after the break.
Update2: UK release is scheduled to December 15th. Price wise, the Cowon S9 will be priced at £169 ($252) for the 8GB and £199 ($297) for the 16GB.
Update3: forget the delays, Cowon has officially announced that the S9 US release will go live on December 19th, priced at $199.99 (8GB) / $239.99 (16GB). You will be able to find it at Amazon.com, eBay.com, Newegg.com, B&H, and ZipZoomFly.com.
Update4: Cowon has already issued the first S9 firmware update, fixing some bugs and UI corrections.
Update5: You can get over 250 flash games for your S9, in 3 packs, compressed in RAR. Just open the files and copy to the flash library - Game Pack 1 ; Game Pack 2 ; Game Pack 3
Update6: April 16, Cowon releases a 32GB version in South Korea, to be available for ₩379,000 ($287). Still no word about a US release for this one.
Update7: May 3rd – Cowon’s 32GB S9 PMP finally arrives Stateside and can be found at Amazon.com for $299.99, either in Black or Titanium flavors.
Update8: As if any of you had any doubts about the possibility that someone out there will eventually open up this sleeky device and start playing with the inner parts, think twice, as the guys at Anything But iPod recently introduced in their Cowon forum some neat images of the S9 cracked open and dissected into small parts, offering a rich look of the touchscreen PMP from the inside. Hit the link for more pictures of the disassembled unit.