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‘Radio for the Facebook Generation’ Arrives

The PURE Sensia packs IP-delivered visual services alongside DAB digital radio.

Promotional image for PURE Sensia radio

DAB set maker PURE introduced today the first commercial radio receiver to employ RadioDNS technology. The PURE Sensia is being billed as “Radio for the Facebook Generation.”

The Sensia features a 5.7-inch, 640×480 high-resolution color touchscreen as the primary interface for tuning webcasts, VHF band III DAB and FM stations; it also can stream music from a home computer or network storage device via Wi-Fi. DAB+ support is slated for a future upgrade.

Using RadioVIS technology, based on the open Radio DNS framework, the Sensia can display IP-delivered visual services, such as slideshows, from many DAB radio stations. Currently in the United Kingdom, such content is being delivered by the BBC and Global Radio.

The screen also is used for displaying custom PURE apps for weather, news, Facebook and Twitter. PURE foresees ongoing development of new apps, too; an SDK for third-party developers is anticipated for 2010.

Online video is not among the capabilities of the Sensia by design, according to Colin Crawford, PURE director of marketing. Reports at Pocket-Link and elsewhere quote Crawford as saying video was supported “Because it’s not a crap TV. It’s a really, really good radio.”

The touchscreen interface allows users to scroll and spin though lists, tap to select items and then sliding and swiping to change views. Multipanel and full-screen views are offered for apps, slideshows, album artwork and so forth. An RF-based remote also can be used to control the Sensia from up to 10 meters away.

The Sensia measures 166 mm × 280 mm × 180 mm, not including the stand — about the same dimensions as an Australian Rules football. It weighs about 1.9 kilograms.

PURE says the Sensia delivers 30 W RMS stereo audio. It also includes and input jack to connect an MP3 player and a headphone jack. An optional rechargeable power supply allows for portable operation. Sensia is also built in accordance with PURE’s EcoPlus principles to minimize power consumption and packaging, and to use recycled and sustainably sources materials; it also conforms to E.U. RoHS standards minimizing the use of lead, mercury and other hazardous substances.

It will be available in red, yellow, black and white body colors, and it is expected to be in stores by the end of October. Suggested retail price is £249.99, including VAT.