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HandHeld Entertainment's upscale Zvue 500 and Zvue 400

HandHeld Entertainment's upscale Zvue 500 and Zvue 400

HandHeld Entertainment, creator of the low-cost Zvue MP4 Video Player, has announced two new portable video players, one of which features Wi-Fi. The $300 Zvue 500 features 1GB of storage (the MP4 Video Player has no onboard storage, instead relying upon memory cards), a 3.5-inch QVGA LCD, support for 30fps video, CompactFlash and SD/MMC card slots, and notably built-in Wi-Fi, which allows the device to download content from Wi-Fi hot spots. The $225 Zvue 400 has only 512MB of storage and does not support Wi-Fi.

While the devices are priced much higher than the $100 MP4 Video Player, they are much more refined, attractive, and capable. The new Zvues will play back WMV and WMA files (the latest Windows DRM is supported) as well as MP3, MPEG-4, and OGG files natively. We're not quite sure how the Wi-Fi feature will play out (will it work with public hot spots? What will the interface look like?), as we've seen another Wi-Fi MP3 player that never really lived up to its hype. Both players will be available in Q1 2006.