By Andrew Liszewski
Sometimes it’s hard to understand what a large corporation like Sony is thinking when they release certain products, but at the same time I guess I’m not completely up to speed on what’s popular in the markets they serve outside North America. So while radio has lost some of its popularity to MP3 players and podcasts here, I’m assuming it’s still popular enough in Japan to not only warrant a fancy new unit, but one with PRR (personal radio recorder?) functionality.
Available in Japan on February 21 for ~$217 (¥18,000) the ICZ-R50 is at its core an AM/FM radio with advanced tuning functions like the ability to easily specify one of 54 locations in Japan to automatically load up a list of local presets. But instead of just listening the to the radio, its also got 4GB of built-in memory (expandable via SD cards or Memory Stick Duos) for recording your favorite shows. And while not as robust as the PVR in your living room, it does let you setup 20 pre-scheduled recordings for catching your favorite shock jock every morning, or whatever it is people listen to on the radio these days.