Archos 5 Internet Tablet

Wow, I’ve gotta say this thing looks WAY cool.  I was doing some searching online for some kind of mp3 player that has enough storage to fit my whole music collection.  I know the iPod classic has a big storage option, but I don’t like Apple, especially the iPod/iPhone.  I wanted something else.  Enter Archos 5 Internet Tablet.  With up to 500GB of storage, it certainly fits the primary need I had.

Then I saw that it had SOOO many other features.  I haven’t been a huge fan of convergence devices, to be honest.  I guess it’s mainly because people try to use them for things they just aren’t intended to be used for.  Like using an iPhone as a bike computer on a mountain bike.  Really?  But this thing makes my mouth water.

Why?  Well let’s run down a list of features.

Internet:

  • WiFi connection
  • Bluetooth tethering to a 3G phone
  • Full web browser (Opera)
  • Full e-mail program
  • WebTV and WebRadio
  • a handful of widgets for weather, currency converting, news reader, etc

Music, Movies, Games:

  • Media Club – huge number of online content providers for music and tv
  • Videos – massive support of a variety of video formats.  Some require extra plug-ins you have to buy.  720p HD support.
  • Music – huge hard drive means you can store a lot of music on this thing.  nuf said
  • Photos – Not only view them, but do organization, slideshows, and even import them from your digital camera.
  • Games – Comes with a handful, and there are more options you can download.  Same sort of idea as the iPod.
  • Stream Content from the Home PC – use the onboard WiFi and stream music and movies to the device over the network with no copying of files.

Television:

  • DVR – with an optional DVR accessory, this thing can function as a DVR for your home television.  Plug it in, record TV, and take it on the go.
  • TV tethering.  The DVR dock also lets you play recorded television programs onto the TV.  Same goes for your music collection.  It can even share its WiFi with the TV so you can browse the web with the TV.

Accessories:

  • DVR dock – This accessory lets you record TV and movies, play back TV and movies to the television, browse the web on the television, serve as a quick-charger, access Media Club, stream content from your PC, and it outputs audio in 5.1 channel surround sound.  It also comes with a remote that includes a keyboard and mouse pointer.
  • GPS car holder – windshield mount for this to function as a car GPS.  It also comes with the navigation software and maps of Canada & US (yes, the maps are stored locally).  Maps for other regions may be purchased when they become available, but as of yet no other regions are available.  It also comes with POI’s, a lane change indicator, and the device can multitask so you can listen to music while using the GPS.
  • DVR snap-on – Ok, this accessory is pretty cool.  Digitize all your old VHS tapes and other old media.  This gadget can also serve as a quick-charger.
  • MiniDock – Yet another cool accessory.  Plug in any USB device to transfer files (thumb drives, digital cameras, iPods…hehehe).  It is a USB 2.0 host/device, and can also work as a mass storage device for Win, Mac, or Linux.  It also has audio/video out, and serves as a quick-charger.
  • Battery Dock – Adds more life to the battery!  Also serves as USB 2.0 host/device, audio/video outputs, you know…more cool stuff.
  • Helmet Cam – Are you kidding me?  Ok, this accessory ROCKS.  Hands-free video recording with a lipstick cam that has controls on the cable.
  • FM Remote – add an FM tuner, as if you needed another accessory, right?  This one also lets you take voice recordings.  So you can record all those lectures in college, right?

This thing is an incredible little device.  It’s definitely going to end up in my possession eventually.  I just have to figure out how I’m going to fund it.  The $500 price tag for the 500GB model isn’t cheap.  I’ll probably sell some stuff.  Anyone want a PC?  I’ll definitely post a review of it when I get my hands on it.

One thought on “Archos 5 Internet Tablet

  1. Ok, so I got a little too enthusiastic about this thing. The features sound great and all, but I was doing a lot more reading and I found a lot of very negative reviews of it. It seems that at least some of them have problems (as with any product, of course), but the terrible reviews are centered around the company’s response to those problems: practically nonexistent.

    Apparently, Archos is a French company that contracts it’s CS for the United States, and that’s where the big problems are. Lots of unrepaired units, difficulty contacting CS, poor treatment from reps, etc. I just wasn’t going there, no matter how good the thing looked on paper. I ended up going with an iPod touch. I lose a little functionality over this thing, but Apple is well-known for its customer service if you have a problem.

    There’s also the XM Skydock that I can get which turns my iPod into an XM receiver where I can tag songs to download on iTunes. I do like that. I am not getting one of those immediately, but I will get one.

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