“So far, no gadget has come very close in mimicking the style and simplicity of Apple Computer’s top-selling iPod digital music player,” reports The Associated Press. “Now, the name that started it all in 1998 Rio is trying to recapture its past glory following the financial blowup of its former parent company, SonicBlue. Recently acquired by Digital Networks North America, Rio is pumping up the volume with seven new models.”

“The first new release, Rio Nitrus, looks like a real contender. Like Apple’s player, the Nitrus stores tunes on a small hard drive. The Rio is more compact and runs longer on a single battery charge. And its sound quality is excellent,’ AP reports. “But Nitrus doesn’t recapture the music player crown for Rio. The sleek black gadget is too pricey, its software lackluster and hard drive too skimpy for the price. It simply doesn’t offer as much bang for the buck as the iPod, which itself isn’t cheap.”

Full article here.