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Photos: Chumby

The Chumby is an adaptable wireless media receiver for hosting music, photos, videos, and Flash-based internet widgets. Because of its plush design and open hardware and software development, there are few products to compare the Chumby to. Whether you're interested in the Chumby as in internet radio, a YouTube video viewer, or a breakfast table RSS reader, the Chumby has geek appeal in spades.

CNET Reviews staff

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1 of 9 CNET Networks/Corinne Schulze
The Chumby Touch screen can't hold a candle to the multi-touch technology of Apple's iPhone, but it gets the job done. The Chumby's graphic user interface makes use of bold, well-spaced icons that don't require users to get too precise. Without web browser or notepad applications, there are seldom times when a touch screen keypad is needed.
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2 of 9 CNET Networks/Corinne Schulze
On the back of the Chumby you'll find two built-in speakers, two USB ports, a 3.5mm headphone jack, power input, and a power button. Wondering why there's two USB ports? The manufacturers included lots of hardware features in the Chumby that they hope developers will eventually take advantage of, including USB ports, an internal accelerometer, a built-in microphone, and a battery connection. In the meantime, you can connect a USB memory stick loaded with MP3 files to turn the Chumby into a music jukebox.
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3 of 9 CNET Networks/Corinne Schulze
Chumbys come packaged in a soft linen sack, along with a power adapter and three rubber character charms that you can hand from the metal grommet on the side of the Chumby (you know... for flair).
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4 of 9 CNET Networks/Corinne Schulze
By connecting your iPod to the Chumby, you've got a neat little speaker dock with a touch screen jukebox control. While the Chumby's iPod interface looks iTunes-esque, don't expect a lot of advanced functionality.
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5 of 9 CNET Networks/Corinne Schulze
On the front of the Chumby, you've got a slightly recessed 3.5-inch color touch screen, and three little holes in the bottom left corner that conceal a microphone. A metal grommet on the top right side that acts as your Chumby's pierced ear, which you can personalize with charms or whatever flair you feel best expresses your Chumby's digital soul.
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6 of 9 CNET Networks/Corinne Schulze
Aside from the cream-colored rubber front, most of the Chumby is made with stitched Italian leather. The Chumby comes in three colors: latte (shown), black, and cream.
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7 of 9 CNET Networks/Corinne Schulze
Don't let this photo fool you--there's no way to use the Chumby without having it plugged into a power adapter (at least, not yet). We're already seeing users hack battery supplies onto their Chumbys in an effort to go completely wireless. Given the manufacturer's openness to hardware and software developers (and DIY hackers), it's only a matter of time before we see a legitimate battery pack for the Chumby.
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8 of 9 CNET Networks/Corinne Schulze
Not much to see here, except to notice how the Chumby's bean bag design helps it to lean slightly back for easy viewing. Don't you just want to squeeze it?
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9 of 9 CNET Networks/Corinne Schulze
The top of the Chumby has a dime-sized marking that covers a button hidden in its plushy guts. This multi-function button can be used to access the Chumby's menu screen, or as a luxuriously smack-worthy snooze button.

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