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Microsoft Announces Zune Specs
Thursday, September 14th, 2006 at 1:50 PM - by
Microsoft officially revealed the specifications for its first Zune media player on Thursday. It didn't, however, reveal the unit's price, or exactly when it will be on store shelves - only that it will be available "this holiday season."
The first Zune will include a 30GB hard drive, 3-inch color LCD screen, a built-in FM tuner, wireless networking that lets other Zune users listen to your music, plays music and videos, displays pictures, and will come pre-loaded with several songs. It will be available in three colors: black, white, and brown.
Along with the music player, Microsoft also announced its Zune music download service, dubbed Zune Marketplace. The service will offer individual tracks for sale along with a subscription package.
Microsoft's Zune offers a few things that Apple's iPod does not: a 3-inch display instead of a 2.5-inch display, wireless networking, and the color brown.
This is Microsoft's first attempt to dethrone Apple's iPod, and it has a long battle ahead of it. The iPod holds over 75 percent of the digital media player market, and the iTunes Store is the most popular legit music and video download service.
The iPod also has an easy to use interface that other players are measured by - an interface that Microsoft will have to work hard to match in terms of usability. The Zune is also limited in that it only works with Windows-based PCs. The iPod is both Mac and Windows compatible.
J Allard, Microsoft's vice president of design and development, commented "The digital music entertainment revolution is just beginning. With Zune, we are not simply delivering a portable device, we are introducing a new platform that helps bring artists closer to their audiences and helps people find new music and develop new social connections."
Based on the success of the iPod+iTunes juggernaut, it looks like Microsoft missed that the digital music entertainment revolution started about five years ago.
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