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5 Alternatives To The Sony X Series Walkman

Sony is trying to revive its once universally popular brand, the Walkman, 30 years after it first blessed the lives of millions of consumers who wanted to have music on the move through an affordable device.

The X Series Portable Media Player might bear the moniker "Walkman" but it looks that Sony has come to the market too late as many other media players vie to grab market share.

We've identified five competitors to Sony's X Series which will give it a run for its money. Remember that the 16GB X Series costs £209 and the 32GB model, £279.

(1) iPod Touch

The iPod Touch is almost certainly the reason why Sony is making such a ruckus about relaunching the Walkman brand. Amazon is currently selling the second generation 8GB model for only £152.40 delivered while the 16GB version costs £205, less than Sony's equivalent model. The iPod touch has a bigger screen, a better browser and nice features like a speaker and the inbuilt accelerometer.

(2) Nokia 5800 Xpress Music

You may be surprised to see a phone in the list but we've decided to include the Nokia 5800 in there. At £139.99 at (including £10 voucher), this 8GB cracker offers a number of unique features that others, including Sony's X Series can't match. Obviously, it is a phone (a touchscreen), it comes with a 3.2-inch screen (bigger than Sony's), has upgradable memory (through a microSD slot), support HSDPA connection and even comes with a GPS. A 16GB microSD card costs only £29.99.

(3) Creative Zen X-Fi

At £186.26 for the 32GB version, the Creative ZEN X-Fi media player is significantly cheaper than the X Series Walkman although it has a smaller screen and packs less pixels It does offer a WiFi connection and plays a wide range of formats including DiVX and Audible. There's a SD Card Slot and FM Tuner as well as the ability to play BBC iPlayer. Furthermore, Creative has upped the Ante with a speaker and the ability to have lice chats on MSN or Yahoo Messenger.

(4) Samsung P3 16GB

Samsung did not make a fuss of its super light (45g), super sexy MP3 player, the P3. With 16GB and costing £176.19, it is still cheaper than the 16Gb X Series model. It comes with BBC iPlayer and Bluetooth compatibility, internal speakers, a 3-inch widescreen touchscreen, DRM10 compatibility, FM tuner and a streamlined profle to die for.

(5) Philips Go Gear

With a 2.8-inch screen and a price of only £117.39 for the 16GB model, the Philips Go Gear is the cheapest of the lot today and can play up to 30 hours of audio playback and 6 hours of video playback. It is certainly not as elaborate as the X Series but represents a nice alternative especially if you do not plan to use your PMP as a web browser.

Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website building and web hosting when DHTML and frames were en vogue and started writing about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium. Following an eight-year stint at where he discovered the joys of global tech-fests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. Previously he was a freelance technology journalist at Incisive Media, Breakthrough Publishing and Vnunet, and Business Magazine. He also launched and hosted the first Tech Radio Show on Radio Plus.