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Category Archives: Portable Media Players

Blu:Sens G14 Goes Right, Where Zune Went Wrong: Unrestricted WiFi

blu sens g14

By David Ponce

Company Blu:sens, from Spain, is releasing an MP3 player with a lot of promise. It’s called the G14, and its claim to fame is that it’s able to do what Microsoft’s Zune didn’t have the guts to. It features WiFi, and it’s not crippled with DRM. This means, in case you’re not following, that you’ll be able to share songs with your friends, wirelessly, and let them keep them. Not only that, but you’ll be able to share all the songs in your playlist, unlike the Zune, which allows record labels to dictate which songs can be shared in the first place. What’s more, the company claims that the device will be able to interact with more than other versions of itself. You’ll be able to connect it to your network, and load the device without having to plug it in. There’s also Bluetooth, for added connectivity.

The G14 supports DivX natively, as well as MP3, WMA and OGG Vorbis. It comes in 1GB and 2GB formats, has a 2 inch 256K color display and is expected to cost between 180 Euros and 200 Euros, though availability information is a little scant at the moment.

[ Product Page ] VIA [ Gizmologia ]

Cable TV to Your Cellphone

Slingboxby David Edney

3 Group, a wireless company in Europe, announced on Thursday that they will be launching a new service in Britain for Cable TV on mobile phones. Using the Slingbox technology you will be able to watch, record, and view channels on your cell phone. The service simultaneously hooks up to your cable box, and broadcasts it through your internet so you can access it. From there you have access to your DVR to do as you like. Before, you could only use the Slingbox with desktops, laptops and some newer mobile PDA phones, but since phones are becoming more sophisticated and are being produced with faster processor speeds, streaming video is becoming more accessible. The usage will not be unlimited, but pricing was not immediately available. The first two handsets included with the software will be the Nokia N73 and the Sony Ericsson w950i. Now, you have no excuse to miss Desperate Housewives.

VIA [ CNN Technology ]

Rimax Mystic, An MP3 Player With Skype Skills

rimax mystic By David Ponce

It’s not often we get our panties up in a bunch over an MP3 player these days. Let’s face it, aside from memory upgrades and different designs, we’ve just about seen every (useful) feature crammed into them already. Not that we’re hating on the music players, but here at OhGizmo we’re always after something special. And we think we might have found a little nugget in the Rimax Mystic. It’s got all the features a good MP3 player should have, including video on a 65k color, 1.5 inch screen. But it also happens to double as a Skype phone. Simply connect the device to any PC via USB, and the pre-installed Skype software will let you use the Mystic as a VoIP phone. There’s a microphone on the player, and the headphones will act as, well, as the headphones, so you can easily stay in touch on the go.

It comes in sizes of 512MB up to 2GB, and starts at ?56, or about $106 after conversion.

[Rimax Mystic] VIA [Xataka]

Rumor: Zune To Feature Pyramid-Like Marketing Feature

microsoft zune

By David Ponce

Well, it’s a bit of a stretch for a headline, but hear us out. The guys at CrunchGear are hitting the rumor mill with news that the upcoming Microsoft Zune will come with a very interesting ability, one that just may give it an edge over the unmentionable white music monolith (at least if we ignore the crippled WiFi). Here’s how it goes. You already know that with the Zune, you can share your songs with other people. They can keep them for three days, or listen to them three times, after which they auto-destruct. If your friends wants to keep any given song, it’ll cost them, to the tune of a buck. But, the kicker is that, each time they do purchase a song, you’ll get a credit. You can later redeem these credits yourself for songs in the Zune Marketplace. This should give you an incentive to share like mad, in the hopes that your friends will buy. If the scheme works, it should make some mad cheddar for Bill and friends.

But of course, it’s a rumor, and we don’t really know anything around here. So, there you have it.

[Crunchgear Article]

Skardin’s HT-250 Ditches Fixed-Memory, Doesn’t Do Much Otherwise

skardin ht-250By David Ponce

The Skardin HT-250 PMP is another random, token PMP from over the pond, but it’s also one that raises an interesting question. With flash memory card sizes reaching the 4GBs, and prices dropping, is it better to get a player with permanent storage, or one that’s memory card based? The HT-250 eschews permanent storage for SD/MMC, and in doing so opens up some interesting possibilities. Sure, we’re not saying to get this instead of an 80gigger, but if you’re on the fence between, say, a fixed-memory 2gigger and this, then why not? Specs-wise, it could do worse: it comes with a 2.4-inch TFT display, DVB-T receiver, AV out, and support for MPEG1/2, MPEG4, DivX, and XviD files and presumably also music.

Skardin is based in China, Taiwan and the UK, and it’s not clear at this point whether it’ll stay in those markets, or even how much it will cost once released.

[Skardin Website] VIA [Xataka]

Zune And iPod Side by Side

zune ipod side by side

By David Ponce

Since the whole point of the article I’m linking to at the bottom is to show you pictures, I’m not going to steal the guy’s thunder and copy all his images to put right here on OhGizmo. Instead, if you’re interested in knowing just how the Zune looks when performing unspeakable sexual acts with an 80gig iPod, follow the link love.

Of note is how large the Zune’s screen is, and how, despite being a little longer and a little thicker than it’s Apple counterpart, the Zune is still weighs considerably less than the iPod.

[Zune and iPod Side by Side]

Microsoft’s Zune’s Social Networking Abilities

microsoft zuneBy David Ponce

We recently discovered that a fair amount of you use us as a primary source for gadget news. Who’d-a thunk? So, we’d be really sad if you didn’t end up finding out about Microsoft’s Zune. It’s the company’s attempt at emasculating the pretty boy iPod, and to be quite honest, there’s actually a chance in hell (a little one) that they manage. You can browse around for specs, but the basics are a 30GB drive, QVGA screen, FM tuner and WiFi. Pictures, music (duh) and video. Of course, there’s more, like the Zune marketplace (similar to iTunes music store), but we feel that the player’s real advantage is in Zune-to-Zune sharing.

Just by coming into range of one of your friend’s Zunes, you’ll be able to wirelessly share any song with them. They can listen to the track three times, or keep it for three days, whichever comes first. If they like it, they can flag it for later purchase; kind of like a try-before-you-buy deal. It’s smart business, but there’s more to it than selling songs. Just like that, Microsoft may have created a revolution. Why? The MySpace generation loooves putting themselves out there, and telling the world just what they like. So, it’s not inconceivable for hordes of Zune totin’ emos kids from going around, broadcasting their playlists for all to hear, and turning the device into more than just a music player… something that MS is hoping for.

This could work, after all. Don’t you think?

[Read The Press Release]

The IPS-11G Could Give iPods Karaoke Abilities, Drive You Insane

ips-11gBy David Ponce

We don’t condone praying; it hurts the knees and rarely yields measurable results that can’t otherwise be attributed to luck or misfortune. That said, when we read about the IPS-11G, we started praying, and as of this writing, we still are. We are praying that no one within a 100 mile radius of us gets their hands on it. See, the little device has the ability to turn your everyday iPod into a karaoke machine. Simply load some MCG-MP3 karaoke format files into the player, and connect it to the IPS-11G. It’ll then read the files and display them on your TV, for everyone’s auditory torture enjoyment. Other than this particularly sadistic feature, the device can also be used as a bridge between the player and your entertainment center; the iPod’s menus can be accessed through your TV using a remote control, allowing to enjoy your music and videos (hopefully minus your wail-y voiceover) on large screen and large speakers.

The price for this potentially evil device is $230 and even comes with a microphone.

[The IPS-11G] VIA [Gizmologia]

Egokast Makes A Video Beltbuckle

egokast belt buckle

By David Ponce

It was only a matter of time until the LED belt buckles evolved to become full-fledged video playing belt buckles. And, it looks like Egokast was the first to get there. The company sells a belt buckle that happens to sport a video player with a 320 by 240 3.5 inch LCD screen. The player is detachable and can thus be used as a standalone video and music player, playing AVIs, MPEG4s and MP3s. The data is stored on SD media, with a 512MB card included in the package. Battery life is claimed a 4+ hours at full brightness, which is ample time for you to get the crap kicked out of you at whichever party you choose to show this thing off.

In case you’re a little uninspired as to what video is cool enough to display on your belt, Egokast has thought of you. Along with your purchase comes a DVD full of “fragments” which you’re free to loop on the device; spinning words and swirly psychedelic graphics galore, which are sure to convince partygoers that you are indeed the coolest person there. You’re even given 6 months of free weekly fragment downloads, so your flava doesn’t get stale.

Price? $290, payable through Paypal.

[Egokast] VIA [SciFi Tech]