This tiny cube packs quite a multimedia punch.
It's no bigger than an ice cube and weighs just .63 ounces (the iPod Nano weighs 1.5 ounces). The latest challenger to the iPod's dominance of the digital audio market is the mobiBLU, and it has the ubiquitous machines made by Apple Computer Inc. beat in one category: size.
The mobiBLU is so small it can fit in a shirt pocket, or be worn like a pendant by using the included necklace earbuds. But some may find the cube shape a bit bulky.
The mobiBLU also competes admirably with the iPod and other high-end MP3 players in other categories. Available in six colors and in two storage capacities -- 1 GB and 512 GB -- it can hold up to 500 songs.
The mobiBLU has an FM receiver with 20 preset stations, built-in voice/radio recorder, five preset equalizer modes and is usable as a portable USB drive. The rechargeable battery has an 8-10 hour life.
Where the player falls short is in its display and difficult-to-navigate menus. The cube-shaped device is stylish, but because of the device's shape, the operating the menu requires two hands -- and really small fingers.
The "organic LED" screen is cluttered and the blue type might remind you of an older generation of computer displays.
The mobiBLU is available only online at Wal-Mart. The 1GB version is $129.72 and the 512GB model is priced at $99.72.