Speaker-sporting Creative Zen Stone Plus hits 4GB

The new Creative Zen players come in a range of colours

Creative has announced the UK release of its Zen music players featuring built-in speakers.

The new 2GB Creative Zen Stone and Creative Zen Stone Plus (the latter also available in a 4GB version) both feature built-in speakers, presumably so that pesky kids on buses can noise pollute their environment even more. Although we first saw the speaker-based Stone at CES, we didn't know it would be available with 4GB of memory.

The Zen players come with a rechargeable battery which promises up to 20 hours of playback time. Supported formats include MP3 and WMA, as well as unprotected AAC files. There’s also a built-in FM radio, microphone, clock and stopwatch.

The new Creative Zen players will be available as of this weekend, in a range of colours, and come with a free skin with a clip attached to it. Pricing is set at £30 for the 2GB Creative Zen Stone, with the two Creative Zen Stone Plus models pegged at £38 and £50.

Creative also slashed the prices of the 4GB and 8GB versions of its Creative Zen MP3 player to £80 and £100 respectively, down from £90 and £120. This price reduction cranked the online rumour mill into action, suggesting new music players might be on the way to CeBIT next month. However, a Creative spokesperson told us it would 'not be announcing any major new products' at the German tech show.