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Manufacturer: Altec Lansing
Min OS X: Any Version    Requires: Minijack Audio Port

May 26, 2004 | Tim Morgan

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Macworld Expo SF 2004: Altec Lansing bursts onto the scene with a plethora of new options, wowing passersby with new speaker systems. But their most intriguing new offering was the understated inMotion, a compact iPod base station capable of playing tunes and syncing and charging an iPod.

Altec Lansing claims the inMotion, a sleek white enclosure designed in the spirit of the iPod, will become an inseparable companion to iPod owners everywhere. And indeed, the device does have a few noteworthy features that tip the scales in its favor, but is it enough? With an iPod in one hand in the inMotion in the other, IMG journalist Tim Morgan and companion Michael Mills set out on a road trip test-drive of the inMotion to put it through its paces.

Itís All About Appearances
If the world were made of iPods, the inMotion would be wearing perfect camouflage. The device is painted in the same lustrous white that Appleís iPod sports, and Altec Lansing clearly took care to ensure that the geometry and design of the inMotion matched that of the iPodís as well.

The inMotion closes to become a flat white tablet vaguely reminiscent of an iBook, and opens to sport two speakers, each with two drivers, separated by space to hold an iPod, angled upward on a balanced base. On the base of the unit, below the speakers, are volume buttons and a power switch, as well as a dock for the iPod. On the rear of the unit are ports for DC power from an included adapter, headphones, an auxiliary audio input, and an auxiliary iPod port.

The unit can be powered by four AA batteries or from an AC outlet. Even with batteries, the inMotion is light enough to carry easily, and even comes with a convenient carrying pouch, although adding the AC adapter to the mix makes things a bit unwieldy. The entire unit is 8 inches by 5.4 inches, which is beyond pocket size, but its slim profile allows it to pack easily in suitcase or the backseat of a car.


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