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Samsung Pebble - Mini MP3 Player

MP3 players have expanded way beyond music -- with photos and video, FM radio and voice recording, plus huge capacity to store your entire music library, podcasts, and videos.

But there's still a place for simple music players -- small music-only players that are easy to carry, with 1 or 2 GB of storage, enough for 100's of songs to play for 10+ hours. The Apple iPod shuffle is the minimalist example -- reduced to a clip-on rectangle with basic controls and no display, 1.62 x 1.07 x 0.41 inches, 0.55 ounce, available with 1 GB for $49, 2 GB for $69.

Samsung has been developing an interesting line of media players, featuring distinctive designs and advanced features, including the high-end Samsung YP-P2 with widescreen touch screen and Bluetooth connectivity (see previous post).

At the minimalist end, the Samsung Pebble (YP-S2) is a simple MP3 player like the iPod shuffle, but with a smooth rounded "pebble" look, designed to hang around your neck with the included lanyard earphones.

The back side of the Pebble is flat, with the playback controls embedded flush the surface.


But it's sometimes hard to tell what's happening with a player that has no display. So Samsung added a concealed LED light that flashes different colors and patterns to indicate playback, sound effect, and charging status. Besides the usual controls for Play/Pause, Left/Right, Up/Down, there's also a Smart button on the side (again since there's no display for a menu), to select the play mode (random, repeat), Samsung DSNe audio enhancement, and LED on/off.

The product includes Samsung Media Studio software, which upgrades to the newer EmoDio software. You can organize media files, create playlists, sync music to the device, and burn CDs. The software also takes care of finding and installing firmware updates, and includes options to download datacasts (blogs), and Text To Speech. However, this software is new, and the prompts and help are clumsily translated to English. (You also can drag and drop files directly as a removable disk.)

The Samsung S2 Pebble supports MP3, WMA, and OGG formats. It is 1.66 x 1.62 x 0.65 inches, and around 0.6 ounces. It's available in glossy colors: black, white, red, green and purple, with 1 GB for $39/$46, and 2 GB coming.

See the Portable Media Players Gallery for details and comparisons.

    Find the Samsung S2 Pebble on Amazon.com

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This entry posted on August 7, 2008.

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