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South Korea: Cowon to Intro Tiny HD Player

Perhaps begging the question, “How small can HD video get and still be discernable as HD,” Cowon is offering a new portable HD media player (model V5 HD), featuring a touchscreen only 4.8 inches in diameter and a pixel resolution of 800x480.

The South Korean firm said the device can generate 720p output because it’s HDMI-enabled. The V5 HD includes an integrated DMB TV tuner and can support H.264, as well as other common HD-centric formats. Cowon said in Seoul that SD video can be outputted from the V5 HD to external displays via a (proprietary) composite cable. The tiny player with a screen not much bigger than some smart phones also has an SD memory card slot to grow capacity.

The Wi-Fi device, using Windows CE 6.0, can also navigate online and Cowon said its battery life is capable of roughly 10 hours. The device also has Flash support and will be available in 8GB, 16GB and 32GB versions.

Shipments start in South Korea in early January. No shipping dates have been announced yet (if any) for North America or other destinations.