Olympus, a company known for its digital cameras, is entering the increasingly-crowded personal music player market with its
m:robe series of players. Sporting the advertising tag-line, “Designed to Do More” the $500 20GB m:robe 500 and $250 5GB m:robe 100 do offer a couple of features not found in other players.
Unlike other players, the m:robe siblings offer touch-screen displays for navigating the interface. They also include a Lyrics features that presumably scrolls the words of songs with embedded lyrics across the display.
The m:robe 500 sports a built-in 1.22 megapixel digital camera and a Remix feature that allows you to create “mini movie productions” that sync to the music on your player. The device’s 3.7-inch VGA touch-screen can display these remixes as well as photos you’ve taken with the built-in camera or imported to the device via USB.
The m:robe 100 can hold about 1,200 songs while the m:500 will hold approximately 5,000 songs or up to 20,000 JPEG images. Both players support the WMA and MP3 music formats and offer approximately 8 hours continuous playtime for WMA files and 12 hours of playtime for MP3 files. Charge time for each is around 3 hours.
The m:robes are slated for release in December 2004.