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Com One Phoenix Wi-Fi Radio

Updated on July 13, 2008

You know what has really surprised me is that we haven’t ever grown out of radio. I mean, radio is hardly in its golden age, but in the age of television and Internet, I am surprised that it isn’t totally dead.

Granted, I don’t think I can even buy a radio anymore, unless I bought an MP3 Player that happened to have radio-playing capability. Most people just listen to the radio off of the Internet like stations like the MiRoamer.

The Phoenix Wi-Fi radio from Com One is designed just for that purpose. The company site claims that the Phoenix is the first portable Internet radio, but I’m pretty sure there has to be others before it. The Phoenix is also designed to sit right where you would put your old school radio, but it requires something that your old radio never needed, a wireless hub.

Com One suggests that the Phoenix is perfect for those who live in a badly FM/AM covered area, people from other time zones getting adjusted, as well as those who are looking for “Internet cultural diversity”. That means that there are going to be a lot of people who didn’t have radio will have more radio than they may ever want.

I found that the Phoenix worked out of the box, and had a setup menu that was easy to use. I had to admit that the design of the Wi-Fi radio is really old-school. It even has a dial for an interface.

The screen is also a very old-school interface that reminds me of a calculator. You can’t deny that it works, though. It is able to get over 1,000 radio stations, and is also has 5,000 podcasts. Believe it or not it even has capability for RSS information feeds.

Not only can it do Internet radio, but it can use UPnP protocol to reach and play any kind of audio files stored on home network libraries, such as computers or NAS disks.

Another feature is the alarm clock which has 2 alarms, snooze, and sleep. The Phoenix also has eight presets for accessing your favorite station at the touch of a button. The power is possible with the included power adaptor and 4 rechargeable AA batteries. The user can use 3.5mm headphones, or listen with the 2x2 Watt speakers.

It appears that companies like Com One will insure that radio will play on forever. If it is the first of its kind, like it says, I’m sure there will be many imitators.

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