While Internet Radios have been popular in Europe for a while, 2008 was the first year the products really gained some traction in the U.S. market. Acoustic Research showed off two new Internet Radios, the ARIR200 and the ARIR600i, which offer some unique features like the ability to record Internet Radio streams to their internal memories and access to the Slacker service. Here are the details.
Key features of the Acoustic Research ARIR200:
- Access to 12,000 Internet Radio stations
- Ability to add your own stations using a URL
- Can record up to 10 hours of Internet Radio using the internal 512MB memory
- Access to the Slacker music service
- Prepaid access to the WeatherBug service
- Alarm clock functionality
- AM/FM tuner
- Available in mid-February, $129 MSRP
Key step-up features of the Acoustic Research ARIR600i:
- iPod dock
- Available in mid-May, $200 MSRP
That's an impressive set of features considering the prices of these radios, especially the $129 ARIR200. Most of the Internet Radios we review--even the more expensive ones--don't include an AM/FM tuner, and we haven't reviewed an one with Slacker, WeatherBug or recording features either. However, because ease of use is so important with these units--especially how they handle searching those 12,000 stations--we're anxious to get review sample of these radios in to see how they compare with the competition.