We are starting to get a little tired of the phrase iPod killers. To be fair, given the iconic status of the Apple player, there is probably no manufacturer on the planet now that could come up with products that really could wipe the floor with the iPod in terms of sales.
Anyhow CES threw up three hard disk based MP3 players that we feel are worth checking out as they have cool features that the iPod doesn’t have. They are the iAudio M3, Auvi SA1500 (pictured) and SoniqCast Aireo.
The first is the iAudio M3. Its USP is that it is significantly thinner than its iPod rival, and arguably even more stylish. Other advantages over the iPod includes the fact that the 20Gigabyte player is compatible with a comprehensive range of audio formats and features an FM radio. It is expected in the UK later in the year for around £250.
In a similar vein is the Auvi SA1500. It is another stylish player, compatible with a range of audio formats and available in 20,30 and 40 Gigabyte versions. It has incredible dimensions of 96mm x 57mm x 12.8mm which is much slimmer than the iPod. It also has battery life of 20 hours and is both Mac and PC compatible. It will be available in the spring. No clues as to its price though.
The $300 SoniqCast Aireo’s trump card is that it can be factored into a wireless network to synchronise the content of its hard drive with that of a PC – much better than hooking up like you have to with the iPod/Creative/Rio products. It also boasts an FM transmitter so users can tune into the player via FM radios anywhere they like in their home, although this is actually illegal in the UK at the moment. At present the device only has a 1.5Gigabyte hard disk, but larger capacity players are said to be on their way.