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Memorex MMP8640: Another kid in the MP3 playground

The new MMP8640 MP3 player from Memorex looks unlikely to trouble the market, although it certainly boasts enough features to do well -- including expandable memory

"Would you like an MP3 player with that SD card?" asks Memorex, who has just announced its first colour portable music player, the MMP8640.

Memorex's new schoolkid enters a tightly packed playground of competing models and will probably feel some hardcore wedgies, nuclear noogies and life-threatening head-down-the-toilet incidents from competitors -- and its dorky name certainly isn't going to deter the bullies.

The 4GB MMP8640 has all the usual functions of a typical MP3 player. It supports MP3, WMA and WMA-DRM music files, has a 46mm (1.8-inch) QCIF+ screen for displaying JPG and MPEG-4 files and will spit out tunes for about 20 hours.

What's nice though is that its memory is expandable via its built-in miniSD card slot, meaning you can throw in some extra storage as you please. Or you could have different cards for different genres of music, if your library is wider than Paul Daniels' wider-than-it-is-tall head. Unlike the cranium of our favourite magician, the MMP8640 also has a built-in microphone and a digital FM radio.

So far this model is only available Stateside and details of UK availability are nowhere to be seen. Not to worry -- there's plenty more fish in the sea right now. -Nate Lanxon