Thoughts on TurboLinux Wizpy

TurboLinux is about to attempt to lure Windows users over to the world of Linux when they begin selling worldwide the Wizpy media player.

TurboLinux is about to attempt to lure Windows users over to the world of Linux when they begin selling worldwide the Wizpy media player.  This is a pocket-sized device that not only plays audio and video files and can pick up FM radio, it also allows users to plug it into their USB power and boot up into Linux.

Wizpy has a 1.7-inch OLED color screen and keypad on the front.  On the media front it can play music in Ogg, MP3 and Windows Media Audio formats, and to display XviD and MPEG4 video files and JPEG images.  With it you'll also be able to record sound to MP3 files and display text files ... oh, and don't forget the FM radio.  It'll ship in two flavors - 2GB and 4GB.

Wizpy
 
Wizpy

Here are a few thoughts on Wizpy:

  • It doesn't look too shabby at all, the design is quite reminiscent of a cellphone.  However, if you put it on a design scale with the iPod at one end and the Zune at the other, it's closer to the Zune than the iPod.
  • It's an interesting idea for sure.  An interesting way to get people into Linux.
  • Memory capacity is too low.  About 1.2GB of the space will be taken up by Linux, so that leave those shelling out for the 4GB version with 2.8GB of space for media.  Those falling for the 2GB version are left with 0.8GB of free space to play with.
  • Why FM radio only?  Where's the DAB?
  • Price.  The Japanese price is ¥33,800 which works out at US$278.  Too high.  Way too high in fact for a 4GB machine, Linux or no Linux.  The combination of limited storage space and high price could be the double-whammy that gives the Wizpy the KO.

Overall, I think that the Wizpy is an interesting idea, but I am left wondering whether overpriced hardware is the best way to promote Linux.

Your thoughts?

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