NextGen MP3 Player

There are several devices that have features that I desire. But they need to converge. I'm betting they will by next Christmas. For example, I'd like a Digital Audio Player that has:

  1. A large capacity flash-based memory. Say a 4GB flash card, to eliminate the spinning disk of an iPod that can more easily break, drains power, increases size, and is more sensitive to temp and shock.
  2. A flash expansion slot for on-demand capacity or selectable libraries of content.
  3. A digital FM player (eg: to tune into otherwise silent TV broadcasts in fitness centers).
  4. A voice recorder that can handle dictation as well as the more challenging meeting mode recordings.
  5. A built-in high-quality MP3 encoder with a stereo "line-in" jack for CD-quality recordings.
  6. [optional] A bluetooth transmitter to wireless \*stereo\* ear buds!!
  7. [optional] An 802.11g wireless connection for fast hassle free upload/download sync to a PC.
  8. [optional] An interface to request and pull content directly from the Internet [eg: itunes.com]

This is closer than you might think... I bought a tiny 512MB SanDisk MP3 player with an FM radio and voice recorder. Perfect for commute time and jogging. But the voice recorder is poor, and it records voice to WAV, not MP3. It also doesn't have a flash expansion slot or a line-in jack. Some other MP3 players have flash expansion slots (eg: Rio). The iRiver MP3 players have great MP3 encoders and line-in jacks that encode up to 320Mbps quality MP3s. Those also have a mic that works well for dictation \*and\* recording general meetings. Boomgear (and others) have started to add Bluetooth to their MP3 players... but the current generation simply routes BT-enabled cellphone audio to your MP3 player's headset... They can't send your music content to a stereo BT headset.

Of course, by then, I'll have added more to my list, and will have to wait until the following Christmas!

Comments:

I like your idea. But put it all in a Treo 650, and then create some technology to make sure I never lose it.

Some Singapore Airlines customer or employee has my first MP3 player. It was only a week old when I lost it! But that's what happens when you are half asleep and you put the MP3 player in the pouch of the seatback in front of you.

Posted by Mark on December 28, 2004 at 04:16 AM EST #

Still waiting on my Treo 650 (on backorder!) but plan to duct tape the Archos 420 to the back to get close to your wish list. Have you heard about the new Archos 500 series on its way? Looks closer to your dream gadget. BTW, we just launched a site where articles like this are encouraged. Check it out at http://www.techlore.com

Posted by Steven on December 30, 2004 at 04:13 AM EST #

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