Ibiza Rhapsody quick look

I have a Haier washing machine. It works really well and it used to fit exactly into a small closet in our previous apartment so we could hide it from the landlords. What I never expected to see, however, is a Haier wireless MP3 player. See, Haier is a Chinese company that is something of a success story. They took an Asian brand and made good-quality home appliances for the US market and did a good job of it. Now they want to branch out.

So now we have the wireless Ibiza Rhapsody. It is about as big as an iPod Classic with a 2.5-inch screen and little touch pad/clicker for selecting video and music. There are fast forward and rewind buttons, play and back, and a lock at the top. Volume is on the side.

The UI is quite striking — a mix of iPod and Zune without infringing on either one. Then you have the service. This device is almost completely standalone. You pick out music, download it, and play it all from Rhapsody over the air. You can connect to your PC running Rhapsody, but it’s almost overkill.

Will I trust an MP3 player that is made by the same people who wash my underwear? If I were a Rhapsody user, I definitely would. For everyone else this one is a wait-and-see.

That looks like an iPod port. It isn’t.