updated 08:45 am EDT, Tue May 27, 2008
ZEN Share Scrapped
Creative has for now shelved its plans to develop a Wi-Fi capable player, the company's Nordic product manager Jan Hvidberg has revealed in an interview. The senior official confirms the one-time existence of the ZEN Share but says that there were "technical complications" developing the player that prompted the company to drop the project. The executive doesn't rule out the possibility of a future player with wireless but for now shelves hopes of an immediate release.
In place of the Share, Creative is purportedly set to launch a new player within the next two months that will have an "exciting" design, according to Hvidberg. No details have been publicly revealed, but the device is expected by many to be the ZEN X-Fi. The player is believed to be an upscale version of the ZEN with a metal back, the company's X-Fi audio processing technology, and Wi-Fi now a possibility. Creative would allegedly ship the device with between 8GB and 32GB of storage.
Hvidberg further makes it clear that any future players will be exclusively based on flash memory; hard drive-based players such as the ZEN Vision aren't expected to come back, he says. The stance is one of the first from a larger jukebox designer. Many, such as iRiver, have informally dropped hard disk-based players from their new introductions but have rarely ruled out a return to the format entirely. Apple and Microsoft are increasingly skewing their own lineups towards smaller and more reliable flash but continue to hold on to hard drive storage for significant components of their model range. [via Anything But iPod]