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Portable Media Player Exhibited at CES2006 - Mp4 Converter

Updated April 24,2006

The most hottest gadget which attract everybody's eyes at the 2006 Consumer Electronics Show held in January in Las Vegas was portable video players, also known as portable media players. A growing number of companies seemed to be embracing this type of device over digital audio only MP3 players, perhaps because of the successes seen at retail by Apple’s fifth generation iPod with video playback capabilities.

Toshiba:

Consumer electronics giant Toshiba, who first debuted their gigabeat portable audio players at CES last year, was back this time around with their new S Series with expanded video playback. Two hard drive based models – the 30GB MES30V ($299.99 – available in March) and the 60GB MES60V ($399.99 – available in March) – will run off of the Microsoft Windows Mobile-based Portable Media Center platform to provide users the ability to use audio, video and photo digital media files. Video can come from sources as diverse as recorded television shows from a TiVo or a PC running Windows XP Media Center Edition or online video rentals and downloads from subscription services like CinemaNow and MLB.com.

Other features of Toshiba’s 2006 gigabeats will include synchronization with media content on a PC through Windows Media Player 10, a 2.4-inch QVGA LCD screen that offers 320 x 240 resolution, compatibility with PlaysForSure (Windows Media DRM 10) online music and video subscription content, integration with a Xbox 360 for playback control, direct USB connection to digital cameras for backup and display of digital photos and a FM tuner.

LG Electronics:

LG Electronics, known more for their display devices, was in force at CES 2006 with multiple announcements related to new portable media players. The first of these is the PM70 Portable Media Center. Planned for a second quarter release, the PM70 Portable Media Center, like the Toshiba gigabeat S Series, runs off of the Microsoft Windows Mobile-based Portable Media Platform. Features of this 30GB hard drive player include the ability to store up to 7,500 songs, 3,000 music videos 50 hours of television/movies or up to 45,000 photos, a 4.3-inch widescreen color display, built-in stereo speakers, personal information management technology for syncing with Microsoft Outlook, direct composite A/V line-in recording from a television and support for PlaysForSure (Windows Media DRM 10) online music and video subscription content.

Joining the PM70 Portable Media Center in a second quarter release are the JM53 and FM30 Portable Media Players. The JM53 has a 8GB hard drive, playback time of up to 30 hours, support of MP3, WMA, OGG and ASF audio files as well as MPEG-4 video and JPEG digital images, a 1.7-inch color screen and a small size at 3.9 x 1.9 x 0.55 inches. The FM30 Portable Media Player is even smaller – around the size of a matchbook – and offers up features such as up to 60 hours of playback on its rechargeable battery, a storage capacity of 1GB (up to 250 songs, 100 music videos or 1,500 photos), support for the same media files as the JM53, a 1.77-inch color screen and an attachment which allows the player to be worn around the neck like a piece of jewelry.

SanDisk:

At the SanDisk booth at CES 2006, the company was busy showing off their new Sansa e200 portable media player series. Three flash based memory models – 2GB ($199.99), 4GB ($249.99), 6GB ($299.99) – make up this series which will be available in March. Items of note in this product include a 1.8-inch color screen, support for Windows Media DRM 10 based online music and video subscription content, long rechargeable battery life, a scratch resistant body, dimensions of 1.7 x 3.5 x 0.5 inches and a built-in FM tuner.

HandHeld Entertainment:

HandHeld Entertainment took their turn at CES 2006 in the spotlight as they announced two new portable media players in the ZVUE line up. What stands out about the ZVUE 400 (first quarter availability – under $225) and ZVUE 500 (second quarter availability – under $300) is that they both sport a 3.5-inch LCD screen in a landscape (horizontal) format, which means that they offer a slightly wider viewing area. The ZVUE 400 portable media player has 512MB of on-board memory as well as dual Compact Flash and SD/MMC memory card slots for storage of media files, a rechargeable battery and support of Windows Media DRM 10 online music and video subscription content.

The ZVUE 500 portable media player offers up the same features as the ZVUE 500 except for a larger built-in memory amount – 1GB – and wireless 802.11 connectivity.Through this wireless option, users can download audio, video and photos to their portable media player without needing to be physically hooked up to a computer.

Samsung:

Well known consumer electronics company Samsung had two new portable media player offerings at CES 2006. The YP-D1, available in February for $249 for a 1GB storage option or $299 for a 2GB option, is what the company is touting as the first flash memory player with a built-in two megapixel digital camera and speaker. Besides taking digital photos and playing music without need for a headset, other features of the YP-D1 include MPEG-4 video playback, JPEG digital photo and text file displaying, MP3, WMA and OGG audio file playback, a rechargeable battery which offers up to 20 hours of playtime, a built-in FM radio, a built-in voice recorder and a 1.8-inch color LCD screen.

Samsung’s other new portable media player is the hard drive based YM-P1 ($399 – available in February). This larger portable media player allows users to view videos in 16:9 widescreen on its 4-inch color LCD screen. In addition, the YM-P1 can also record video directly from a television via an A/V in connection. Other features of this portable media player include a rechargeable battery which offers up to 15 hours of audio playback, support for Windows Media DRM 10 based online music and video subscription content (Microsoft PlaysForSure certified), support for a wide array of different types of media files (MP3, WMA, OGG, AC3, MPEG-4, DivX, Xvid, AVI, WMV, JPG, BMP and text files), a built in SDIO slot for expanded memory card storage, a built-in voice recorder and a built-in FM radio.

Thomson/RCA:

Thomson, through their well known RCA consumer electronics brand, was announcing their new Lyra X3000 Personal Multimedia Recorder (available now for $399). This portable media player with a 3.6-inch color LCD screen takes an interesting twist in this product category in that it is one of the first to support transfers and playback of television recorded on select satellite TV provider DIRECTV digital video recorders. In addition, the Lyra X3000 portable media player is compatible with Microsoft PlaysForSure based online music and video subscription content, greatly expanding the amount of third party entertainment options available.

Other features of the Lyra X3000 portable media player include support for direct video recording from sources such as a television, a weight of under eight ounces, a thickness of 0.75 inches, a rechargeable battery which offers around four hours of video playback, support for multiple audio, video and digital photo file types, a 20GB hard drive, a built-in speaker and voice recording.

Tatung:

Rounding out the major CES 2006 announcements regarding portable media players is Taiwan-based Tatung’s V620 Portable Media Center.Like the Samsung gigabeat S Series and LG PM70 Portable Media Center, the V620 runs off of the Microsoft Windows Mobile-based Portable Media Platform. Features of this player, which will debut in the spring, include a 3.5-inch color LCD screen, a 20GB hard drive, audio integration with an Xbox 360, synchronization with media content on a PC through Windows Media Player 10, compatibility with PlaysForSure (Windows Media DRM 10) online music and video subscription content, support for a variety of digital media file formats and up to 20 hours of audio playback via its rechargeable battery.

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