Since ABi was acquired by a larger company we have been working to expand the ABi brand and one of the avenues we’ve been down has now turned into something much more than just an initial idea: the ABi Player. Put short, the ABi Player is a MP3 player made by us here on ABi and a Chinese OEM manufacturer. Don’t worry, it won’t be another MP10 player, we’ve made sure to find a manufacturer that actually produce decent products.
While we have absolutely no hardware or software design experience, we know what SHOULD go into a player better than most people. That’s why we teamed up with a OEM manufacturer that would let us use existing hardware for our own software. We’re not doing the firmware coding ourself, but we have the final say in what goes into the player. We also made sure to pick a player with a Wolfson chip in it so the sound quality should be excellent.
The interface in the picture is just a mock up, but you can except ABi branding in the final product as well- it’s our player after all. The player has a 2.8″ OLED WQVGA (480×272) capacitive single touch touchscreen as well as a couple of tactile controls on the side and top. The player has only 8GB of internal memory but two MicroSDHC slots on the bottom which will integrate fully into the media library. It will support Xvid video up to 640×480 pixels and hopefully we’ll manage to get h.264 support on there too in a later firmware update, although it won’t be available at launch. Other noticeable features are Ogg Vorbis and FLAC support, gapless playback for all file types including MP3, a line out mode and a 10 band custom equalizer.
Price is yet to be determined, but our goal is less than $150. We’re still looking at additional ways to distribute it aside from the site itself, so price will depend on predicted sales when those details get in order. We’re still working on the interface and some of the features of the FW but we’re expecting to have a pre-production model in a few weeks with a release around the middle/end of May or beginning of June. Stay tuned for more details as we develop this further! After having reviewed more players than what is considering medically safe, it’s nice to be able to decide how a player should be from scratch. Hopefully our readers will like the final product once it’s out.
Sorry to disappoint those of you who believed in this, but it was unfortunately April Fool’s