Viewsonic PMPs Look Good, Need Touchscreen

vpd500-black-front_lrI remember a time before the iPod Touch when PMPs were struggling to get noticed, even if they were fantastic machines. The Viewsonic VPD400 and VPD500 remind me a lot of that time.

The two models, which pack a 4.3-inch and 5-inch 800 x 480 LCD screen respectively, look pretty good, with a raft of features including playback of most of your typical video files: AVI, MOV, DAT, MPEG1/2/4,VOB, FLV, and RM/RMVB, while MP3, WMA, WAV and APE FLAC takes care of audio. There's a microphone and TV out, too, with tiny buttons on the top and side to control navigation of the UI, which resembles Sony's Xross Media Bar.

They'll hit shelves later this year for $249 and $299, which is a pretty decent price point. But from the brief hands on I had last week, the buttons were a bit small and difficult to press – the use of a touchscreen would have drastically improved to the usability.

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