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Streaming speaker has built-in Android touchscreen

Feb 2, 2014  |  Eric Brown
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[Updated Feb 4] — Auris launched, and has already canceled, a Kickstarter campaign for a portable Android-based streaming media player with a 7-inch touchscreen, 90dB speakers, WiFi, Bluetooth, HDMI, and a webcam.

 

Kickstarter campaign canceled!

One day into its Kickstarter campaign, with 298 backers and 83 percent of its $65,000 funding goal already achieved, Auris posted a notice stating that it had canceled its Kickstarter campaign “as it has been seriously compromised by our contract manufacturer.” At the campaign’s comments page, Jay Shah, co-founder of Auris, added: “Thanks for your messages and suggestions! We appreciate everyone’s comments and seriously take them in to consideration. That being said we plan to continue with this concept and are focusing all of our efforts right now on getting this product in a new avatar to you all as soon as possible. We welcome all backers to suggest features they would like improved or incorporated in this concept. While not all suggestions are feasible or practical, there are some that just make a lot of sense.

 
Continuing with our original post…

 
Introducing Wily

Auris, which already sells an $80 “Skye” WiFi music receiver and a $50 “FreeDa” Bluetooth receiver, is now prepping an Android 4.2.2-based portable combination speaker and media-streamer called Wily. The Wily device is launching today on Kickstarter with pledges set at $149 for the 8GB version and $168 for the 16GB model, and will eventually move to a retail price of $239 and $269, respectively, once the funding round is over. The devices are set to ship in June.




Example Wily screens
(click images to enlarge)

The stylish, oval-shaped device can act as a set of wireless speakers, as well as a standalone music source. Wily’s Class “D” Digital Amplifier and speakers provide 90dB sound with low frequency response, says Auris. It provides WiFi streaming of music and video “from most popular” Android apps, including Spotify, Pandora, Netflix, and Youtube, says the company. A Bluetooth 4.0 connection with aptX audio coding is said to enable music streaming from mobile devices with “almost no loss in audio quality.”


Wily physical dimensions and design
(click images to enlarge)

With its dual-core, 1GHz Cortex-A9 processor, and 7-inch, 1024 x 600 touchscreen, the Wily simulates the experience of a rather rotund, mid-range Android Jelly Bean tablet. The device ships with 1GB of DDR3 RAM, and offers 8GB or 16GB of flash, as well as a 64GB-ready microSD slot. An HDMI port lets you stream 1080p video to a TV from stored content or via Internet streaming services.


Wily connections and internal electronics
(click images to enlarge)

A 2-megapixel front-facing webcam and a microphone with echo cancellation are supplied for video chat. The mic can also be used as a speakerphone for “phone calls,” says Auris, although it appears to be referring to VoIP, as there’s no other indication of cellular support. Other I/O includes a micro-USB port and audio line-in.


Holding and carrying Wily; Wily’s remote
(click images to enlarge)

With the 3000mAh battery, the 2.3-pound device provides on-the-go music playback from flash for up to 20 hours. The Wily comes in multiple colors, and has an aluminum base that can also be used as a handle.

 
Wily specs

Specifications listed for the Wily include:

  • Processor — dual-core ARM Cortex-A9 @ 1GHz with Mali-400 MP2 GPU
  • Memory:
    • 1GB DDR3 RAM
    • 8GB or 16GB flash
    • MicroSD slot for up to 64GB
  • Display — 7-inch, 1024 x 600 pixels TFT LCD touchscreen
  • Camera — 2-megapixel front-facing, fixed focus
  • Audio:
    • Stereo speakers
    • Class “D” digital amplifier
    • 20Hz to 20KHz SBR, 90dB frequency response
  • Wireless — 802.11b/g/n; Bluetooth 4.0 with apX; IR
  • Other I/O:
    • HDMI out
    • Micro-USB OTG port
    • 3.5mm audio line-in
  • Other features — mic; power and volume buttons; IR remote control; stand; color choices
  • Battery — 3000mAh; up to 20 hours music playback from flash, 15 hours music from Bluetooth, 12 hours music from WiFi
  • Weight — 2.3 lbs
  • Dimensions — 326 x 160 x 110mm (12.8 x 6.3 x 4.3 inches)
  • Operating system — Android 4.2.2 (“Jelly Bean”) with Google Play

 


Vizio
Portable Smart Audio

(click to enlarge)

At CES, Vizio launched a somewhat similar, Android-based streaming audio player called the Portable Smart Audio player. The device comes in 4.7- or 7.0-inch touchscreen models, with 96dB and 101dB speakers, respectively. Like the Wily, the Portable Smart Audio player includes Bluetooth, WiFi, micro-USB OTG, flash memory, and a battery. Vizio’s device is heavier, however, and lacks Wily’s cameras and HDMI ports.

The demonstration video from Wily’s Kickstarter campaign appears below.


Wily demonstration video

 
Further information

The Wily launches on Kickstarter today, with “super early bird” pledges set at $149 for the 8GB version and $168 for the 16GB model. Auris will move to a retail price of $239 and $269, respectively once the funding round is over. The devices are expected to ship in June. More information may be found at the Wily Kickstarter page, and more on Auris may be found at the Auris website.
 

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