Creative has introduced its new and slightly iTunes-friendly Zen MP3 player.

The new Zen is Creative's first MP3 player to support music in the Apple-championed AAC audio format.

It's a small system (55 x 83 x 12mm) and is equipped with a 2.5-inch colour screen. Zen is available in a range of capacities: 4GB, 6GB, and 16GB and boasts an SD slot for memory expansion.

“The Creative Zen immediately gets attention because it has the same size screen as our award-winning Zen Vision:M, but is so much smaller, lighter and thinner,” said Sim Wong Hoo, chairman and CEO of Creative. “Now people can have a great video watching experience with a very compact player.”

The device wil play CDs ripped in iTunes and supports non-DRM iTunes Plus downloads from the iTunes store, the company said. The device also supports MP3, WMA, M4A (non-DRM AAC). The tiny device also plays video encoded in WMV and DivX/XviD.

The player includes a built-in FM radio with 32 station presets, a voice recorder, and a personal organiser that can synchronise contacts, ‘to do’ lists, and calendars with Microsoft Outlook.

The Zen offers 25 hours of music or five hours of video playback on a full battery. Systems cost £99.99 for the 4GB model and £139.99 for the 8GB model. Pricing for the 16GB unit has not yet been confirmed.