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SanDisk reviving dead MP3 player business with Fuze+

updated 07:10 pm EDT, Wed August 18, 2010

SanDisk Sansa Fuze Plus leaks out

SanDisk is finally upgrading its core MP3 player line, a leak this evening showed. The Sansa Fuze+ should replace the 2.5 year old original with a fresher design that uses capacitive touch buttons and a color OLED display. It would address some longstanding complaints with support for AAC and H.264, although Engadget's spec notes SanDisk is keeping the largely unused slotRadio format an option for its microSDHC slot.

Most of the features would be on par with competitors on sale today, with 24 hours of battery for music, five hours of video and capacities between 4GB and 16GB. An FM tuner is still onboard and will support both DVR-style pausing and recording for later. The player doesn't have a price but should ship September 12.

SanDisk was once one of Apple's most vocal competitors and at one point launched an anti-iPod campaign that accused iPod buyers of being "sheep." After failing to dislodge Apple with a series of media players, however, it largely fell silent and has only occasionally launched mildly upgraded players like the Sansa Clip+. The company's chief executive Eli Harari eventually admitted last year that SanDisk couldn't "out-iPod the iPod" and would try to carve out a niche rather try to oust Apple.

SanDisk is still second place in MP3 players in the US but has just a small fraction of the market versus Apple's estimated 70 percent. It does continue to have lead over Microsoft's Zune line, which has rarely exceeded two percent.




by MacNN Staff

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Comments

  1. SockRolid

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Good luck with that

    'The company's chief executive Eli Harari eventually admitted last year that SanDisk couldn't "out-iPod the iPod" and would try to carve out a niche rather try to oust Apple.'

    A very clever man. Excellent strategy.

  1. coffeetime

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +1

    Microsoft Zune...

    is 2 percent. Yet SanDisk MP3 does better than Zune. That's so unreal.

  1. Telekinesis

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +1

    ?

    I have a sansa clip and fuze and looking at the specs it seems virtually identical, what is the point of this "upgrade" when there are no upgrades?

  1. iphonerulez

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    It seems like a very nice device, but...

    that media player market is surely tapped out or has very little headroom to grow. This device will definitely cut into the Apple shuffle market and may even have some impact on the iPod Nano for iHaters. It should certainly sell very well in China and India since those people will buy anything as long as it's cheap.

  1. Kendall808

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Form Over Function

    The tactile controls were one of the best things about the Fuze. In comparison those flat capacitive controls are horrible to use - a stupid fad that really needs to die.

    This is just a really bad design decision, all about the looks rather than functionality and ease of use.

    I've been a pretty loyal Sansa fan, owning a couple of Clips and a Fuze, but I'll definitely be looking elsewhere for my next player.

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