Archos’ recently-announced AV500 will combine a Personal Video Player and a handheld computer. [Brighthand]
When will Apple just go for it. Why is Archos the pushing the boundaries of what you can carry in a single multimedia powerhouse device. Perhaps Cupertino is just waiting and watching to make it that much easier (and therefore better) to use… ala iPod.
The AV500 will include a 704-by-480-pixel screen capable of displaying DivX and MPEG4 video at 30 FPS. Of course, it will be able to record in these formats as well. It will also support Microsoft DRM for WMA and WMV9 video. It will include a video-out port so it can be hooked to a TV.
It won’t just be a video player. Users will also be able to play and record MP3s.
All these multimedia files will take up a lot of room, so there will be one version of the AV500 with a built-in 20 GB hard drive, and a second with a 40 GB one.
To make it easy to transfer pictures from a digital camera, this device can act as a USB 2.0 host.
The Qtopia environment is an icon-based graphical user interface for handhelds. It is used by a good number of Linux models, including Sharp’s Zaurus line. It is bundled with a suite of PIM software that can be synchronized with Microsoft Outlook.
Qtopia usually comes with a Microsoft Office-compatible word processor and spreadsheet, though there has been no word yet if the AV500 will include these. It will definitely come with email software and a web browser.
It is not clear at this point what type of memory card slot this model will have, but PC Card and CompactFlash are strong possibilities, as Archos has said users will be able to add Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, Ethernet, GSM/GPRS to this device via removable cards.