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Sansa Fuse+ arrives to resuscitate SanDisk's MP3 brand

updated 08:55 am EDT, Tue August 31, 2010

SanDisk Sansa Fuse Plus gets new UI, many formats

After a long silence, SanDisk today finally updated its core MP3 players with the Sansa Fuze+. The MP3 player is first a reworking of SanDisk's interface and drops the iPod-like jogwheel for a capacitive touch directional pad. Its software interface is also new and brings a simpler if Zune-inspired "film strip" interface that puts major categories at top and provides either quick access from the top level or a launch into a deeper level.

Format support is also greatly expanded over the original Fuze and now accepts both AAC audio and H.264 video, including any unprotected content first bought in iTunes. It can also handle typical formats such as MP3, WMA and WMV as well as less common formats like Audible books, FLAC and OGG. SanDisk is still trying to push its slotRadio format and will automatically recognize cards put into the microSDHC slot, although it can still use regular cards.

Earlier extras still carry forward, such as FM radio with recording and a microphone for voice memos. Battery life lasts for a full day of audio or five hours of video, even with a larger 2.4-inch screen.

The Fuze+ is tailored to the low end of the spectrum and has capacities of 4GB, 8GB and 16GB priced at $80, $90 and $120 respectively. All of the players are available today in as many as five colors, although not every color is available with every capacity.

SanDisk's launch is its first real debut since the Sansa Clip+ and longer still for any of its full-featured players, putting the company back into competition. The company had once been one of Apple's bitterest rivals in the MP3 player field and is still the second-largest competitor in the US, but the iPod has held on to roughly 70 percent of the country's market share for years, in part due to slow or non-existent updates from smaller firms.

by MacNN Staff



  1. MyRightEye

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Oh oh...

    Apple better watch out.

  1. iphonerulez

    Joined: Dec 1969


    I thought analysts were claiming how

    irrelevant Apple's mp3 players have become, yet Sansa is still building them. If there was no market for them then Sansa should be out of business by now. I know people that still use dedicated mp3 players and they seem to be satisfied with them. They're not crying that everything has to be consolidated into one device.

  1. andrewbw

    Joined: Dec 1969



    The small MP3 player has basically become a commodity item. Not much differentiates one manufacturer from the other as everyone has mostly caught up on issues of ergonomics and interface. My 76-year-old dad bought himself some sort of SanDisk player (not sure what model). It's small, the interface is perfectly usable, and it's dirt simple to load with music -- it mounts as a USB storage device on a Mac or a PC. I think he paid $35 brand new from Amazon (it was even cheaper from Amazon resellers). Why pay more?

    Larger PMPs like the iPod Touch, Zune, Archos, etc. -- there are still clear differences and Apple holds a marked advantage with its app universe.

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