Zune Thoughts - Daily News, Views, Rants and Raves

Be sure to register in our forums! Share your opinions, help others, and enter our contests.


Laptop Thoughts

Loading feed...

Windows Phone Thoughts

Loading feed...

Digital Home Thoughts

Loading feed...





All posts tagged "zune"


Friday, January 23, 2009

Zune Revenue Plummets

Posted by David Tucker in "Zune News" @ 03:40 PM

http://www.engadget.com/2009/01/23/...venue/#comments

“Microsoft's newly-announced layoffs and declining profits aren't the only bad news in Redmond -- according to the company's quarterly statements, Zune platform revenue decreased $100 million, or 54 percent compared to the same quarter last year, due to falling device sales. Mega-ouch. Not all is doom and gloom for the Entertainment and Devices Division, which continues to be profitable with a $151m haul: Xbox 360 and PC platform revenue increased six percent to $135 million. Meanwhile, Apple saw a three percent increase in iPod sales over the same period, so we're anxious to see what Microsoft has planned for reviving the social.” (via Engadget)

Can anyone say ‘ouch’? Year over year decline in revenue of over half is terrible news. Now I realize we’re the midst of a recession but that still doesn’t soften a blow like that to a division that needs to show some progress. I’m fairly confident the Zune won’t be going anywhere anytime soon at least. I believe its too important to Microsoft’s entertainment strategy in the long term. It does need to be relevant, however. It may be time that Microsoft looks at its Zune strategy and decide if it’s time to change anything.

I think that if Microsoft could get some very tight integration with Zune and its Windows Mobile 7 platform they could have a real winner. But it has to be great. Windows Mobile is in so many hands right now that tying the Zune to that platform would be a powerful selling point for both WinMo and Zune. I’ve recently moved to Android but if WinMo 7 were to be Zune-capable then they could very well get me back.


Thursday, January 22, 2009

Zune Marketplace Freebie: "Goin' Outta Control" by KaboOse

Posted by Darius Wey in "Zune Media" @ 12:30 AM

http://social.zune.net/my/ContentRe...ca-0019b92a3933

Another week and another Zune Marketplace freebie that you can download, play back, burn to a CD, and sync to your Zune device. You'll need a Zune account to download the free content. Clicking on the link(s) below will automatically launch the Zune software and take you to the artist's page, so please ensure that the software is installed on your PC.

  • Title: Goin' Outta Control
  • Artist: KaboOse feat. Royce Da 5'9"
  • Genre: Hip-Hop
  • Length: 3:26
  • DRM-free MP3: Yes


Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Zune Marketplace Freebie: "Another Black Day" by Another Black Day

Posted by Darius Wey in "Zune Media" @ 02:07 AM

http://social.zune.net/my/ContentRe...ca-0019b92a3933

Another week and another Zune Marketplace freebie that you can download, play back, burn to a CD, and sync to your Zune device. You'll need a Zune account to download the free content. Clicking on the link(s) below will automatically launch the Zune software and take you to the artist's page, so please ensure that the software is installed on your PC.

  • Title: Another Black Day
  • Artist: Another Black Day
  • Genre: Rock
  • Length: 3:39
  • DRM-free MP3: Yes


Friday, January 9, 2009

Regrets on the Life of Zune

Posted by Hooch Tan in "Digital Home News" @ 08:00 PM

http://news.cnet.com/8301-13526_3-10137684-27.html

"Bach insisted that music was a required component of the "three screen" experience, and that Microsoft had to be a leader rather than a mere technology provider in this space. If Microsoft hadn't built the Zune, it wouldn't have been able to create the Zune software and Marketplace, which have become pretty solid after a couple false starts. But he admitted that if the company were to enter the space again with perfect hindsight, it would do things differently."

Matt Rosoff, who wrote this blog entry for CNet believes that what Bach would have done differently was that Microsoft would have left the actual hardware up to manufacturers, instead creating the entire platform supporting it from the software, to the specifications, to the online store. I think this idea bears a significant resemblance to how Microsoft is handling their Windows Mobile segment historically, but with a central online service, like Xbox Live. I'm sure that if the Zune had been launched this way, it still would have to fight against the empire that is iPod but it would probably be easier on Microsoft as they've shown that they're not experts in hardware innovation. Leaving the hardware to manufacturers may not lead to revolutions in the Zune interface, but it would make changes to everything quicker and faster.

Tags: zune, bach

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Zune Marketplace Freebie: 'Paris Is Burning' by Ladyhawke

Posted by Darius Wey in "Zune Media" @ 12:38 PM

http://social.zune.net/my/ContentRe...ca-0019b92a3933

Another week and another Zune Marketplace freebie that you can download, play back, burn to a CD, and sync to your Zune device. You'll need a Zune account to download the free content. Clicking on the link(s) below will automatically launch the Zune software and take you to the artist's page, so please ensure that the software is installed on your PC.

  • Title: Paris Is Burning
  • Artist: Ladyhawke
  • Genre: Rock
  • Length: 3:47
  • DRM-free MP3: Yes


Thursday, December 18, 2008

Will the ZuneUI Influence Windows Mobile?

Posted by David Tucker in "Zune Talk" @ 04:30 PM

http://www.mobilemag.com/content/100/344/C16718/

"Instead of having two separate teams work on possibly related devices, it seems that Microsoft is merging its Zune user interface team with the team that works on Windows Mobile. If this rumor holds up to be true, it could very well mean that the first ZunePhone won't be running on its own platform. Instead, the Zune-ness will "simply" be integrated into Windows Mobile."

Unless you live in a bubble you've probably notice a slight buzz over the past couple weeks in regards to the Microsoft project under the codename of Pink. First speculation was that it was a Zune Phone, a direct iPhone competitor. I personally have ignored this rumor mongering. Its possible that one day Microsoft could release a device like that. And then everyone who latches onto every rumor will seem like a genius for predicting it. Of course the same people predict it every 6 - 12 months so eventually they might be right.

Now that that the rumor has been debunked again, the speculation has gone is in a million different directions. I am not going to try and guess what Microsoft is doing. We're going to potentially find out at CES anyway. What I find more interesting is the rumor above from Mobile Magazine. While I can't vouch for its veracity any more than a Zune phone rumor, at least its something different!

This is something I've wanted to see myself. I've been using the Windows Mobile platform since it was Pocket PC 2002, starting with the HP Jornada 565. At one time the interface was the best thing out there, at least in my opinion. While I don't necessarily think the interface is actually bad today, despite all of the criticism it gets, its definitely old and clunky. Its not the best thing out there anymore. And after 7 years of the Windows Mobile platform, just a week ago I took a big leap and went from the T-Mobile Wing to the T-Mobile G1. Even I've left and while I hope to see Windows Mobile take enough advances that I'll reconsider the move it would take a total overhaul of the OS. So I hope this rumor is true.


Monday, December 15, 2008

Zune 4GB Digital Media Player with Zune Pass Subscription Reviewed

Posted by Ron Hostetter in "Zune Hardware" @ 07:00 AM

Product Category: Digital Media Player
Manufacturer: Microsoft
Where to Buy: ***NEED AFFILIATE LINK HERE***
Price: $149 USD
In the Box: 4GB Zune Player, earphones with three earpiece covers, Zune sync cable.
Specifications: 4GB flash memory, 1.8 inch color LCD screen, 320 x 240 screen resolution, 802.11b/g wireless connectivity, FM radio with RDS, dimensions 41.4 x 91.5 x 8.5 millimeters (1.62 x 3.60 x 0.334 inches), 48.2 grams (1.7 ounces).

Pros:

  • Small, light, fully functional media player;
  • High resolution LCD screen with beautiful colors;
  • Zune Pass subscription allows for unlimited music downloads.

Cons:

  • Large border around screen seems to make the screen smaller than it needs to be;
  • Very few accessories available;
  • Difficult to limit access to explicit content using Zune Pass.

Summary:

Microsoft's family of Zune players now includes smaller flash memory players with the full functionality of the larger, hard-drive players. The smallest of the bunch is the 4GB model. These small devices include wireless networking, video playback, and FM radio, just like their bigger brothers. The sound quality is good, even through the cheap earbuds included in the box. The Zune Pass subscription is a great value, allowing subscribers to download unlimited music for only $14.99 per month. The Zune Pass can be shared with three Zunes, allowing a family to enjoy as music as they like. The small 4GB Zune's screen has fantastic resolution, but the screen is too small to really enjoy watching videos.

Read more...


Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Zune Marketplace Freebie: "Wreck of the Old 97" by Charlie Louvin

Posted by Darius Wey in "Zune Media" @ 10:00 PM

http://social.zune.net/my/ContentRe...ca-0019b92a3933

Another week and another Zune Marketplace freebie that you can download, play back, burn to a CD, and sync to your Zune device. You'll need a Zune account to download the free content. Clicking on the link(s) below will automatically launch the Zune software and take you to the artist's page, so please ensure that the software is installed on your PC.


Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Welcome to The New-And-Improved Social

Posted by David Tucker in "Zune Talk" @ 05:00 AM

One of the best functions of the Zune is that it lends itself to music discovery in several ways. The sharing feature that the Zune launched with is the most well-known and oft-ridiculed method. Microsoft has come out with several iterations of the Zune firmware since then and what most people don't realize is that the social aspects of the Zune have been upgraded significantly. In fact, many of the complaints I've seen about the Zune center around the fact that it doesn't perform functions that it actually can perform. Without owning a device, however, its pretty difficult to understand all of the nuances of the Zune.

The Zune device has always had a menu option for wireless sharing. Originally that option was limited at best. It was the right idea but three days was too limited to serve any real value. Until the day comes that the Zune is everywhere the feature will always struggle to find acceptance. Its OK though because there are better ways to share music with your friends. Much better ways, actually. In fact if you have a few friends in your social circle on the Zune it can change the experience quite a bit! So how does this whole social thing actually work? Glad you asked!

Read more...

Tags: zune, social

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Sneaking a Zune Into School

Posted by David Tucker in "Zune Talk" @ 12:31 PM

So I heard the funniest thing on the radio a little bit ago...a shout out to the Zune! I'm down in Miami (currently writing this as I wait for my dentist appointment to start) and I was listening to 93 Rock. Right before I got here some school kids called the radio station and let the DJ know they were listening in school to the show and specified that they were listening on the Zune.

So if any of you were part of that group listening, drop us a line! You didn't say what school you were in and you can keep all that to yourselves so you don't get in trouble but let us know what you were doing that you were able to pull it off. I want to know how many of you there were too!

Tags: zune, kids

Monday, November 24, 2008

Get Common's New Album for 99c on December 9

Posted by Darius Wey in "Zune Media" @ 10:30 AM

http://social.zune.net/artist/Commo...2a3933/overview

"Brace yourself for the music of the future with Common's new album, Universal Mind Control. The Zune staff loved this latest work from Common and wanted the world to hear it, starting with you. So, to help spread the word, for a limited time you can get the entire album for the price of just one song."

Hip-hop artist, Common (a.k.a. Common Sense), is releasing his new album, Universal Mind Control, on December 9 for just 79 Points (99c). It's a limited-time offer, and one that requires a small purchase, so take note.

First, install the Zune 3.x software if you haven't already, then purchase 400 or more Microsoft Points for your account. On the 9th, sign into the Zune Marketplace and add Universal Mind Control to your cart for 79 Points. Any remaining Points can be used to purchase additional Xbox or Zune content. It's that simple!


Friday, November 14, 2008

Zune Marketplace Freebie: "All Buddhas" by KnowSleep

Posted by Darius Wey in "Zune Media" @ 06:45 AM

http://social.zune.net/my/ContentRe...ca-0019b92a3933

Another week and another Zune Marketplace freebie that you can download, play back, burn to a CD, and sync to your Zune device. You'll need a Zune account to download the free content. Clicking on the link(s) below will automatically launch the Zune software and take you to the artist's page, so please ensure that the software is installed on your PC.

Title: All Buddhas (feat. Seasunz)
Artist: KnowSleep
Genre: Electronic/Dance
Length: 3:52


Thursday, November 6, 2008

Zune Marketplace Freebie: "Buff Nuff" by Roots Manuva

Posted by Darius Wey in "Zune Media" @ 02:18 AM

http://social.zune.net/my/ContentRe...ca-0019b92a3933

Another week and another Zune Marketplace freebie that you can download, play back, burn to a CD, and sync to your Zune device. You'll need a Zune account to download the free content. Clicking on the link(s) below will automatically launch the Zune software and take you to the artist's page, so please ensure that the software is installed on your PC.

Title: Buff Nuff
Artist: Roots Manuva
Genre: Hip-Hop
Length: 2:14


Saturday, October 18, 2008

Zune Marketplace Freebie: "Never Let You Go" by Taj Mahal

Posted by Darius Wey in "Zune Media" @ 07:00 AM

http://social.zune.net/my/ContentRe...ca-0019b92a3933

Another week and another Zune Marketplace freebie that you can download, play back, burn to a CD, and sync to your Zune device. You'll need a Zune account to download the free content. Clicking on the link(s) below will automatically launch the Zune software and take you to the artist's page, so please ensure that the software is installed on your PC.

Title: Never Let You Go
Artist: Taj Mahal
Genre: Blues/Folk
Length: 4:43


Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Showdown: Ultimate Ears Metro.fi 2 Earphones vs. Zune Premium Headphones

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 07:00 AM

What do you get for headphones for under $65? Let's compare two options, one of them twice as expensive as the other. Is that a fair comparison? $65 is affordable for most people who purchase something capable of digital audio playback, so I think it's fair game. I was using my set of Ultimate Ears' Metro.fi 2 earphones ($62.99 from Amazon.com) this morning, and I decided to throw the Zune Premium Headphones into the mix - you know, the ones that come with the Zune 80, but not the Zune 120 - and I was quite disappointed with how poor the Zune headphones sounded. I normally wouldn't criticize free headphones that come with a player, because it's always my advice to toss them and buy a good pair of headphones, but in this case the premium headphones are a product normally sold separately for $39.99 MSRP (retailing for $30 from Amazon) so I think they're fair game for comparison - especially now that there's no modern Zune that includes them. Read more...


Sunday, October 5, 2008

Zune Marketplace Freebie: "Amores Como el Tuyo" by Toby Love

Posted by Darius Wey in "Zune Media" @ 10:25 AM

http://social.zune.net/my/ContentRe...ca-0019b92a3933

Another week and another Zune Marketplace freebie that you can download, play back, burn to a CD, and sync to your Zune device. You'll need a Zune account to download the free content. Clicking on the link(s) below will automatically launch the Zune software and take you to the artist's page, so please ensure that the software is installed on your PC.

Title: Amores Como el Tuyo
Artist: Toby Love
Genre: Latin
Length: 4:38


Thursday, October 2, 2008

Special Edition Zune : Gears of War

Posted by David Tucker in "Zune News" @ 07:37 AM

http://www.engadget.com/2008/09/30/...al-edition-zune

“Specifically, Microsoft has laser-etched that pesky little "Crimson Omen" onto a glossy black Zune 120, pre-loaded the device with 244 pieces of "Gears of War" media -- the soundtrack, concept art, behind-the-scenes vids and so forth, nothing you won't be able to find elsewhere -- and squeezed it all into some "collectible" Gears packaging, featuring our testosterone-addled protagonist pondering the meaning of life. The whole kit will run you $280, with pre-orders at Walmart.com and Amazon.com”


If there’s one thing that Microsoft likes to do, it’s make special edition Zunes. There’s been more of them than I can count! But that’s ok, I happen to really like most of them. It works out well that they have a couple of great properties like this one that allow them to really give a unique Zune too. I’d say this is the perfect gift for any “Gears of War” fan. (Well, other than a copy of “Gear of War 2” of course.) Engadget has some more pictures too!


Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Zune: Welcome to the Flawed Social

Posted by Darius Wey in "Zune Talk" @ 04:05 AM

Since the 1.0 days, Zune has matured into a very capable platform. Yet there are still flaws, some of which have bugged me more often than not as of late. Here's a handful that I believe deserve some attention.

Read more...


Zune Marketplace Freebie: "Radio Retaliation" by Thievery Corporation

Posted by Darius Wey in "Zune Media" @ 01:25 AM

http://social.zune.net/my/ContentRe...ca-0019b92a3933

Another week and another Zune Marketplace freebie that you can download, play back, burn to a CD, and sync to your Zune device. You'll need a Zune account to download the free content. Clicking on the link(s) below will automatically launch the Zune software and take you to the artist's page, so please ensure that the software is installed on your PC.

Title: Radio Retaliation
Artist: Thievery Corporation
Genre: Electronic/Dance
Length: 3:26


Tuesday, September 16, 2008

More Zune Marketplace Freebies: This Time, They're Top Songs!

Posted by Darius Wey in "Zune Media" @ 12:08 PM

Well, it turns out "Dem Boyz Go" isn't the only freebie. We've discovered ten other tracks on the Zune Marketplace Top Songs chart that are also available for free - and being top songs, suffice it to say, most of the artists need no introduction. This is either a very generous offering or some colossal mistake. Get 'em while they're hot!


Reviews & Articles

Loading feed...

News

Loading feed...

Reviews & Articles

Loading feed...

News

Loading feed...

Reviews & Articles

Loading feed...

News

Loading feed...

Reviews & Articles

Loading feed...

News

Loading feed...

Reviews & Articles

Loading feed...

News

Loading feed...

Sponsored links