Rio Takes on Apple – It’s a Mini Adventure

The first of the iPod-mini copycats emerge as the Rio Carbon is unveiled.

We already seen that the Rio Karma is a good alternative to the iPod. Now Rio is hoping to take on Apple’s iPod mini, with its latest MP3 player. The Rio Carbon will use Seagate’s new 5GB ST1 hard disk to give it a larger capacity than the iPod mini – for the same money.


Rio claims that the Carbon is the size of a business card, which should be small enough for most. It will play WMA, and MP3 and supports the Audible format for audio books. Rio claims that the control system offers simple menus and intuitive one handed operation. The player connects via to your PC via USB 2.0.

It also features a built-in voice recorder and offers a claimed 20 hour battery life, compared to only eight hours for the multi-coloured Apple – or as the Rio web site has it, “long after mini-powered players have died”. Oooh cutting.

We doubt that the Rio is actaully made of carbon; it looks like stainless steel to us. However, if it’s as good as the Karma, we look forward to reviewing it.

The Rio Carbon should be available in the UK later in August and will cost £199.


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