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Audible Advisor
Sunday August 5, 2001 - 11:17 PM EST - By James Hromadka

Usability

The Advisor has a very intuitive interface. All of the traditional playback controls are here, and the Pop-Up screen makes it easy to control the module when in other programs, although I found that it is difficult to listen to spoken-word while reading something on the Visor. It is a needed feature, but I think you will find yourself pausing playback when in other programs. Battery life is very acceptable, with my Prism only dropping to 75% after listening to a 1.5 hour recording. Audio quality is acceptable for spoken word, and even the sound effects from some of the titles sounded pretty good. Audible has several codecs available, but you will sacrifice memory space for sound quality if you use one of the higher codecs.

The only improvements that I can see in this module is to have the battery icon reflect the Visor's available battery level and to allow users to delete titles within AAPlayer. It is possible to use FileMover to delete Audible files, but this should be a feature within AAPlayer itself. Another nice feature to have would be bookmarks. Q-in-Law only had two sections, and it would be nice to be able to create my own bookmarks. This is a minor quibble, as the Advisor remembers your location when removing the module. Fortunately, Card Access could add these improvements in the future, as the Advisor has flash ROM that can be updated. The earbuds -- either love 'em or leave 'em. I'm no big fan of earbuds, so I use my own headphones.

Conclusion

The Audible Advisor from Card Access is one of the most intuitive Springboard modules available today. The ability to listen to audio books is very appealing to Visor owners, as they already want their information on the go. This module makes me wish Houston had a better mass-transit system so that I could use it on my trek into work each day. The only thing this module is missing is Mac compatibility. As I use the Mac almost exclusively now, it really makes this module more difficult to use. However, as Audible is only giving lip service to the Mac, I can't fault Card Access for not providing Mac support either.



Criteria 

Rating

Features 4
Usability 5
Setup 4
Cost/Benefit 5
Overall
(not an average)
Pros
- Intuitive interface
- Access to controls from any screen
- Ability to store Visor data
Cons
- No Mac compatibility
- Audible.com site difficult to navigate

Story Sections
Audible Advisor
AAPlayer
>Usability


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Product Details
Name: Audible Advisor
Company: Card Access
Size: 2.25" x 2.125" x 0.30"
Weight: 0.6 oz.
Color: Yes
Hard Cover Compatible: Yes
Conduit: Windows using USB only
Price: $49.95 (w/ Audible.com subs.), $129.95 (Standalone)





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