Six months have passed and I still use my M3 daily. It has earned its hallowed place in my tech hall of fame right next to my T|E. I listen to a *lot* of audio books, and the bookmark feature on the M3 has been great for that. I can track my spot in several books at once and come back to them at my discretion. The iPod didn't have any bookmarking capacity until one of the most recent upgrades.
The battery life on this thing is great. I use it for a couple of hours a day at least and only have to charge once or twice a week. Often I leave it plugged into a USB port at work, and it seems to trickle charge through there, because lately I haven't had to charge it at all.
I have had some problems with the cables. When carrying the unit and headphones, the cable to the remote inevitably gets illicitly tangled with the headphone cables. I think that a little cable turtle might help here. Also when carrying the unit in my pocket and the remote clipped on, sometimes I have caught the cable on passing protrusions and pulled the cords out. No fun!
I have recently reached a zen place with carrying my M3 around. I found a pocket in my Timbuk2 Metro bag
(a small messenger bag with great pockets for tech) that fits the M3 perfectly. In the car I plug into the remote and my tape deck and play through the stereo. In the office I put my bag in a bottom drawer and run a usb cable to the M3 and play the music on my computer. It never has to leave my bag!
So yes, this device is largely responsible for the decline in my use of my T|E. I don't use iSilo or read ebooks nearly as much as I once did. I'm constantly sucked into lecture series from The Teaching Company
, and my music consumption has grown to enormous levels. But it has brought me great joy. The Nano is the first other DAP that I have found myself eyeing with lust, though for me 4-5 gigs is just too small. Also the M3 is just so open. It acts like a plain old harddrive and you can treat it as one if you desire. It plays lots of formats and doesn't tie you down to interface software. Yah, the interface is not the best, but I have learned to deal with that. This device has been well enjoyed so far, and hopefully it has a long life ahead of it.