Windows Media Devices have been getting a whole lot of really positive press lately. CNet stacked the Clix above the iPod on their must have list, and in a recent review of the new Toshiba Gigabeat device, Cnet said: any advantage that the iPod/iTunes ecosystem had over its WMA competitors has been wiped out by the Gigabeat S and WMP 11. Big words. I’m told the the Creative Zen Vision M provides a similar experience to the Clix only with a hard-drive based device.
I’ve spent the past few days playing with an iRiver Clix device along with Windows Media Player 11 on Windows Vista Beta 2, and I have say I’m really impressed. I’ve blogged about my woes with another PFS device, the Rio Carbon on several occasions in the past, so as you may have guessed – I went into this experience with some healthy skepticism.
That said – Sean’s excitement about the work going on with the Clix, WMP 11, and URGE made me want to give it a try, and after a few days of using it, I think there might be some hope for Windows Media devices in the long term.
Here are some of the highlights…
The one glaring thing missing from the Clix+WMP+URGE trifecta is a nice end-to-end story around podcasting. You can get a podcast subscription up and running using the RSS + Auto Playlist support in Windows Vista, but it’s not nearly as simple as it could be.
Engadget has a great review round-up of other peoples opinion’s of the Clix if you want to read more about it. So is this good enough to replace my iPod Nano? It’s very close - I just need to find a belt-clip or armband accessory for it when I go running and then it’s pretty much a done deal. I had this thing before the iPod, I never would have switched away from it the way I left the Rio Carbon. If you’re looking for a media player, and want to use a subscription media service – this is definitely the only way to go.