updated 04:00 pm EDT, Thu June 14, 2007
Archos 5th Generation
Quickly following up on its teaser, Archos today launched a sweeping update to its media players with the Generation 5 series. Headlining the updates is the fully-unveiled 605 WiFi. Unlike the outgoing 604, the fifth iteration packs a crisper 800x480, 4.3-inch touch LCD to help play H.264, MPEG-2/4, and WMV clips at DVD resolution for up to 5.5 hours as well as to browse the web through an Opera browser. The 605 docks with a DVR attachment that lets it record NTSC-resolution TV or audio, and plays back AAC/MP3/WAV/WMA tracks for up to 17 hours.
A new electronic programming guide and a content portal are common to all new Wi-Fi models and let owners schedule TV recording or buy media directly from the device rather than use a host PC. The 605 will ship with either 4GB of flash (plus SD card expansion) or 30/160GB of storage depending on the model.
Also announced but yet to be listed on the company site is the 705 WiFi, an upgrade to the large 7-inch touchscreen player that expands storage options to include a 160GB drive alongside the earlier 80GB model. It too gains the programming guide and portal features and should have the same playback support.
Archos is completing its announcements today by launching two smaller, pocket-sized devices. The 3.5-inch 405 goes without wireless and holds 2GB of built-in flash but uses SD to greatly expand its available storage, while the 105 is a new design meant for one-handed use which relies solely on 2GB of built-in flash.
Not all details of the players are currently available, including prices and ship dates. All but the 105 are certain to arrive in the US and should have costs similar to existing models.