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HandHeld Entertainment reveals WiFi ZVUE

HandHeld Entertainment, makers of the pocket sized ZVUE portable media player, have revealed their Model 500 upgrade first to be seen at the upcoming CES conference in Las Vegas.

Looking at the original ZVUE, and then the WiFi ZVUE model 500, you would have to think twice to believe that the same company developed these. Their latest innovation sports wireless (WiFi) 802.11a/b/g connectivity, a 3.5-inch LCD screen with 320×240 landscape video mode at 30fps, 1GB of on-board flash memory and slots for Compact Flash (up to 8GB!), SD/MMC.

“The new WiFi ZVUE will give digital media lovers the ability to download videos and music from virtually anywhere they can connect to a wireless hot spot, without needing to be hooked to a personal computer,” said Jeff Oscodar, president and chief executive officer of HandHeld Entertainment.

The “third generation” WiFi ZVUE (Model 500) will sample in February of 2006 and ship to consumers in Q2 for around $300 USD, it measures 3.5 x 5.5 x 0.5-inches. It’s powered by a rechargeable lithium-ion battery and supports WMV, WMA and DRM software.

A slightly smaller capacity ZVUE (Model 400) is also going to be shown at CES, it will have 512MB of on-board flash memory, lacking WiFi and no feature phone-style keypad with stop/play/fast-forward/rewind/menu navigation buttons like the Model 500 has, it will sell for around $225 USD in Q1 of 2006.

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