Portable Media Player vs. Portable Video Players

Difference Between Portable Media Player And Portable Video Players A PMP can store hours of music, television shows,…

Difference Between Portable Media Player And Portable Video Players

A PMP can store hours of music, television shows, movies, and photos—on a hard drive, microdrive, CD/DVD, or flash memory. Although these units are portable, they haven’t quite graduated to the fit-in-your-pocket convenience of the MP3 player. This is due to the fact that PMPs need to provide a large enough screen to watch videos. Apple Inc.’s video iPod series of PMPs are small enough to fit in your pocket. They are capable of showing images and video. But the tiny screens prove to be more of a novelty than useful display. Some PMPs can connect to a PC via a USB cable—enabling data transfer—or to a television or home-theater system via output jacks. This allows viewing on a larger screen. Adding to the size and weight of these devices is the battery power required to play videos, making them considerably heavier and larger than MP3 players. Many full-featured PMPs are comparable in size to a paperback novel.

Similar to the PMP, portable video players (PVPs) are handheld devices that provide mobile playback of videos. Their screens are wide, typically up to 8 inches (20 centimeters). In addition to playing back videos, prepackaged television shows can be purchased by episode and viewed on the device. Computer software programs (such as TiVoToGo or the Microsoft Windows XP Media Center operating system) also enable computers to format television shows for DVDs and media players. The shows are digitally recorded, then transferred via a home network to a desktop computer. There the software converts the file and transfers it to the gadget of choice. Microsoft has created a product called the Portable Media Center (PMC). It is a specific player that runs Microsoft’s Windows Media Center operating systems and is closely related to a small computer.

Future generations of PMPs will boast sleek, lightweight designs and more-impressive features than today’s models. These will likely include sophisticated games, FM radio tuners, e-book readers, e-mail, cameras, video conferencing, and GPS (Global Positioning System) functionality. As these devices continue to evolve and as wired and wireless connections become more commonplace, consumers should expect to see a disconnect between the PMP and the computer.


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