The shameless bravado that fuelled Inovix's decision to clone the iPod nano is second only to the unblushing verve with which the Diphyllobothrium Latum tapeworm completes its subcutaneous invasion. Though imitation may be the sincerest form of flattery, it is also the severest form of dullardry. The IPocket looks like the nano, and it feels like the nano, but it sure as pie doesn't work like one.
In the three days we've had the IPocket so far, it's met with a series of tragedies. The first came when our religiously careful mobile phone reviewer (he's the kind of person who handles new products like they're fragile china, and probably has a plastic cover on his sofa at home) scratched the IPocket's screen. He reported that he was "removing what looked like a bogey" from the screen, but this turned out to be a tiny globule of a highly caustic unknown substance -- possibly grundig. Once smeared across the screen, it instantly rendered the player worse off even than the notorious nano -- not renowned for its scratch-proofing. We're pretty sure that the offending fluid was already on the IPocket, and did not originate from the sterile Crave environment.
The second tragedy happened when we discovered the IPocket uses a non-standard headphone socket, making it impossible to attach headphones. We found that Inovix has bundled a little adaptor cable, but what was the thinking here? Why save 1mm on the headphone port at the expense of a standard headphone connector?
Third complaint: the menu system is completely counter-intuitive. You click left and right to move up and down through menus. We couldn't figure out how to view track listings (we may have to concede this is impossible), and the back of the player is a mess of odd little logos. We'll have a full review for you soon, you lucky, lucky freaks. -CS
Update: more images and a full review of the Inovix IMP-5500 IPocket are now live in our Reviews channel.