newKUBE — World’s Smallest MP3 Player

As expected from a device dubbed as the World’s smallest MP3 player, this thing is really tiny. It is literally a cube a little less than 1″ on any side. I always like to give the good news first, so I will say that for such a small device the sound is truly amazing. Now for the bad news.

The KUBE is made of cheap plastic. The first time I turned it on, the on/off button popped off and flew across the room. As you might expect, it is also very tiny,. I had to use a flashlight to find it and tweezers to put it back on. After repeating this scenario several times, I finally got it to stay in, but only extreme care will help it stay put.

One side of the KUBE has a place for a microUSB card (a 2GB card is included) and a standard 3.5mm headphone jack. The opposite side has two teeny-tiny slider controls that are side-by-side. One is on/off that I gave me so much trouble. The other is an All/Shuffle/One that helps you control what should play. It is not always easy to remember which slider performs which function.

Three other sides of the KUBE also have controls. These are small squares with raised symbols. These are used to control the volume and playback. Unfortunately, the symbols cannot be used by feel, and since the symbols are the same color as the cube, it is almost impossible to see which button performs which task without some bright light and in many cases, a magnifying glass. On top of that, because all the sides are pretty much the same, it is difficult to just reach for the device and press the proper button without really thinking about it. Yes, you can learn where everything is, but not without considerable effort.

The KUBE also came with a pair of cheap white earbuds with hard ends, which I immediately disposed of. Although the newKUBE instruction sheet on the back of the packing cardboard, showed the functions of the controls, it was otherwise pretty much useless, as was the www.newqube.com website. There is a tiny alert light on this device. The instructions say that it displays blue when fully charged and red when the battery is low. Mine also displayed a flashing blue light and a pink light. Nowhere did it state what this meant. I guess I may never know.

The KUBE comes in yellow, white, pink, green, and black. The brightly-colored QUBEs are especially cute. When paired with some better earbuds, I was amazed at the audio quality of this tiny device. It can rival most larger MP3players. It’s a great-sized device — so light that you barely know you have it hanging around your neck.

Yet, I can’t in any way recommend this player. It is just a shame that this company didn’t use better materials, better labeling, and better instructions. At $33.90, the price is good, but I think, the newKUBE will be labeled as a “cheap” MP3 player. They could have charged a bit more and turned it into a real winner.

 

6 Comments

sem 05-02-2013, 21:02

hello Sandy, thank you for your comments. It is obvious we cannot make everyone happy and it is obvious everyone is entitled to their own opinion. We appreciate your comments and i believe it is spur us to make it better. Thank you.

Kim 06-02-2013, 20:57

Thank you for your review.

If you or your readers are looking for a more “expensive” option to theKube, we have theKube2.

CNET called it “A mini-MP3 player hit from Singapore”. The body is made from aluminum.

(http://www.cnet.com/8301-33373_1-57357032/thekube2-a-mini-mp3-player-hit-from-singapore/)

You can find more information at thekube2.com.

While you were looking at the form, the review failed to address the audio features of the newKube. It be fair for your readers to understand the audio capabilities of the newKube.

I believe that no other manufacturers will be able to pack the similar audio quality at a similar price point.

“Kids these days certainly have different priorities than those a decade ago. As soon as the world entered the digital era, children’s and teenagers’ birthday and Christmas wishes became more high-tech. Instead of the latest CD by their favorite band, they now ask for MP3 players and iPods. But the changes have come at a higher price, too.

Fortunately, a new product has been released to ease the strain on parents’ wallets — the newKube.”

The above was written by Jarkata Globe (http://www.thejakartaglobe.com/tech/with-the-newkube-its-hip-to-be-square/569523)

Given the current global economy situation, every dollar counts (I would have used penny, but inflation has made the penny, well, worthless today). At USD33.90, this MP3 player would be a gift that parents can consider if they have some spare cash to give a gift to their children.

We are also aware you will be writing an article on our warranty that only Fans get warranty for the newKube.

Please be assured that we have provided warranty to both fans and non-fans. If US customers have bought the newKube on Amazon, we have honored our warranty on 1-1 exchange on faulty parts with no questions asked. However, our strict quality control on the production has resulted in us doing this for theKube and theKube2 at an extremely minimal rate in 2012.

Our feedback rating on Amazon.com currently stands at 4.3 stars out of a possible 5. This mirror our focus on customer satisfaction.

We welcome the laywers’ comments on the issue. We wanted to introduce a new and innovative social warranty solution which no other brands have introduced before. If you are on the side on innovation, you would understand that lawyers tend to be roadblocks when it comes to innovation.

We look forward to further comments from you.

Regards.

KIM (PR for Bluetree Electronics)

Sandy Berger 07-02-2013, 10:57

For those of you who are following this thread, the first response is from Sem Chong who is the managing director, CEO and founder of Bluetree Electronics, the company who makes the newKube.

Sandy Berger 07-02-2013, 11:05

If you are wondering about the Facebook warranty controversy that KIM, the PR rep for Bluetree Electronics mentioned. Here’s the scoop.

The newKube support page at http://www.newkube.com/support/ says this:
“Only Facebook Fans get warranty for their newKube player. Only Fans enjoy free 1-year warranty for newKube.”

KIM’s response directly contradicts this statement from their website.

Kim 07-02-2013, 20:16

Thanks for highlighting this. We do agree there is an error in the copywriting on the support page which did not highlight its original intention.

We wanted to give our fans who join the newKube Fan Club an extra benefit – the additional 6 months warranty. We will be changing the text to ensure non-Fans that they get 6 months warranty and those who join the Fan Club gets an additional 6 months.

This is a common practice where you register online or post your warranty card, consumers will get additional benefits.

Don Sebastian 08-02-2013, 08:26

Thanks Sandy for your service to the public. Think you got the MFG straightened out.

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