Handheld Entertainment isn’t giving up on getting a slice of the end-of-year holiday market, announcing today that its Zvue 250 portable media player is shipping and available for purchase via Amazon.com and at selected Wal-Mart locations in the United States.
The Zvue means to be a portable media player which doesn’t strain the wallet: it offers a 2.5-inch 234 by 160 backlit active matrix screen and stores media on removable SD/MMC cards, which means the players can cart around up to 4 GB of your favorite music, video, and images. As a music player, the Zvue 250 supports MP3, WMA, WAV, Ogg, and MP2 audio (with ID tag support); on the video front, the Zvue 250 supports AVI, MPEG4, ASF, Xvid, and WMV with DRM—according to Handheld Entertainment, that makes the Zvue 250 the only PMP which supports WMV with DRM priced at under $200.
“The ZVUE 250 is our next step in creating a family of value-priced personal media players that everyone can easily afford and enjoy right out of the box,” said Jeff Oscodar, president and CEO of HandHeld Entertainment, in a statement. “Many companies are making overpriced and overly complicated PMPs. We believe that consumers will love the fact that they can easily enjoy our durable and affordable ZVUE 250 by using our ZAPP(TM) Media Manager software to easily download videos from Zvue.com or our new sites for hilarious user-generated content.”
Although watching video on a low-resolution 2.5-inch screen may not appeal to cinemaphiles and TV addicts, the Zvue 250 also offers UB 2.0 connectivity, two headphone jacks for “experience-sharing” with a close friend, and a total weight of just 5.2 ounces, so you’re no going to slip a disc carrying it around. And at a suggested price of $99.95 (with 128 MB “starter” SD card), the unit may appeal to folks who’ve been holding off on joining the personal media player marketplace, or who are looking for an inexpensive, secondary unit for occasional use. And, Handheld Entertainment wants to be sure this gets communicated to the world: in their opinion the Zvue 250 makes a perfect gift. (There, now you know.)