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Zune Dead, Then Not Dead, Then Officially Dead

timothy posted more than 2 years ago | from the now-that's-longevity dept.

Microsoft 181

UnknowingFool writes "On Monday Microsoft updated webpages to announce a price drop for the Zune pass subscription, and it removed all references to the Zune hardware. This prompted many to suspect the Zune was dead. A MS spokesman then tweeted that the updates were in error and the Zune was not dead. Then MS later admitted that they will no longer produce hardware but would honor any existing orders. It appears MS has trouble with managing their PR."

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Points to a larger cultural problem at MS (5, Interesting)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598246)

There is no grand vision and it's got poor leadership, so individual parts of the company have no fucking clue what's going on in other parts of the company. By contrast, this is something that Apple (under Jobs, anyway) has always been MUCH better at.

Sadly, I'm starting to see this problem in Google too. Google seems to be going off in a million different directions lately, with no apparent overarching plan. They seem to be taking a "throw every dart at the board and hope one hits the bullseye" approach (similar to MS). Apple takes more the "throw a small number of darts, but aim them well and throw them hard" approach.

Re:Points to a larger cultural problem at MS (4, Interesting)

Hazel Bergeron (2015538) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598310)

It's true. For all the justified dislike for Apple there is, Jobs has spent the last 30 years being excellent at picking the good ideas at the right time, which explains why they're such a successful and popular brand.

Mind you, MS is still the only one of these big three to have a committed interest in long-term research (the "grand vision" which has kept IBM alive despite a century of changes): Google, for all its PhDs, publishes very little interesting research, and Apple publishes nothing, only occasionally advancing the state of the art where it's been important for implementation.

Re:Points to a larger cultural problem at MS (1)

Kjella (173770) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598446)

Mind you, MS is still the only one of these big three to have a committed interest in long-term research (the "grand vision" which has kept IBM alive despite a century of changes): Google, for all its PhDs, publishes very little interesting research, and Apple publishes nothing, only occasionally advancing the state of the art where it's been important for implementation.

Public research. That is more a question of strategy, by publishing you generate interest and investors but at the same time you reveal what it is you're researching and what you think may be the next big thing. I can't really say I blame them, if they're footing the bill then they're the ones who should benefit from it. If you want public science, the public will probably have to fund it.

Re:Points to a larger cultural problem at MS (1)

bryan1945 (301828) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598528)

Why publish when you can keep it for yourself for your own gain? Also, just because they don't publish doesn't mean they are not doing research. (no, I have zero idea if the are or are not.)

Re:Points to a larger cultural problem at MS (0, Troll)

vlm (69642) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598562)

MS is still the only one of these big three to have a committed interest in long-term research

MS does research? For real? I thought all they did was buy startups and competitors, some of which had done research in the past, or are winding down R+D after the purchase.

Please don't confuse research grants from the bill gates charitable foundation with "MS does long term research".

Re:Points to a larger cultural problem at MS (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37598660)

For realz. see http://research.microsoft.com/apps/dp/pu/publications.aspx

Yes, it's a fully funded research division that publishes papers on OS, functional programming and other CS topics. No, they don't have a PR wing that posts frontpage to news aggregators every week.

Re:Points to a larger cultural problem at MS (1)

teg (97890) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598706)

MS does research? For real? I thought all they did was buy startups and competitors, some of which had done research in the past, or are winding down R+D after the purchase.

Microsoft has a large research division, Microsoft Research [wikipedia.org] - they spend a lot of money and talent on long term research outside product cycles or existing product in development.

Re:Points to a larger cultural problem at MS (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37599086)

So these are the idiots that came up with the ribbon?

Re:Points to a larger cultural problem at MS (2)

mbkennel (97636) | more than 2 years ago | (#37599502)

No. Microsoft development doesn't pay attention to Research very much. Too much management fubar.

But Kinect (an actually impressive innovation, if useless) did come from Research.

Re:Points to a larger cultural problem at MS (4, Informative)

macs4all (973270) | more than 2 years ago | (#37599892)

No. Microsoft development doesn't pay attention to Research very much. Too much management fubar.

But Kinect (an actually impressive innovation, if useless) did come from Research.

Um, Kinect came from an outside company.

The "Kinect" technology was actually offered to Apple first; but the third party company (can't remember the name) turned it down, saying that Apple had too many "conditions" in their offer.

Re:Points to a larger cultural problem at MS (5, Informative)

egamma (572162) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598714)

MS is still the only one of these big three to have a committed interest in long-term research

MS does research? For real? I thought all they did was buy startups and competitors, some of which had done research in the past, or are winding down R+D after the purchase.

Please don't confuse research grants from the bill gates charitable foundation with "MS does long term research".

Why not visit Microsoft Research and see for yourself? [microsoft.com]

Also check out the Microsoft Garage [technet.com]

You may not like Microsoft but it's hard to deny that they do more research than, say, Symantec or Dell.

Re:Points to a larger cultural problem at MS (1)

uniquename72 (1169497) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598742)

MS is famous for their excellent R&D department, which does great things that are never followed up on by the rest of the company. I saw a pretty amazing MS presentation 10 years ago showcasing what they were doing with touchscreens -- stuff that became commonplace in products using Apple and Google software.

Please don't confuse your ignorance of MS research with Bill Gates's charity work.

Re:Points to a larger cultural problem at MS (4, Interesting)

Archangel Michael (180766) | more than 2 years ago | (#37599242)

That is because, Microsoft, at its heart, is a "Windows (tm)" Company. That is what they do. Apple used to be in the "Macintosh" business, but they realized that they were more than that, and that they are a "technology" company.

Microsoft views everything through that pane of glass and everything is tied to leverage that marketshare. They shoehorn Windows onto Phones and Tablets and it just doesn't work because nobody wants Windows on a phone.

Re:Points to a larger cultural problem at MS (1)

hjf (703092) | more than 2 years ago | (#37600148)

One word for you: Azure.

Re:Points to a larger cultural problem at MS (1)

ivoras (455934) | more than 2 years ago | (#37599308)

I concur - they have some amazing things done in their research division but they seem to follow the footsteps of the famed Xerox Palo Alto center - they can't seem to build products on top of that research.

I'm very open source biased but MSR is one of the places I wouldn't have any problems working in.

Re:Points to a larger cultural problem at MS (1)

1s44c (552956) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598822)

MS is still the only one of these big three to have a committed interest in long-term research

MS does research? For real? I thought all they did was buy startups and competitors, some of which had done research in the past, or are winding down R+D after the purchase.

Please don't confuse research grants from the bill gates charitable foundation with "MS does long term research".

MS do tons of very expensive research. Little to none of it ever makes it into their products though.

Re:Points to a larger cultural problem at MS (2)

dkf (304284) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598904)

MS does research? For real?

Yes, loads. But with the ignorance you're showing, you must work for some part of the rest of Microsoft; after all, they never seem to listen at all to what MSR's up to and instead focus on turning out the same not-very-innovative crap over and over.

Re:Points to a larger cultural problem at MS (2)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 2 years ago | (#37599408)

MS is still the only one of these big three to have a committed interest in long-term research

MS does research? For real? I thought all they did was buy startups and competitors, some of which had done research in the past, or are winding down R+D after the purchase.

Please don't confuse research grants from the bill gates charitable foundation with "MS does long term research".

The only evidence I see is Microsoft looks to see what the market is doing now and develops a product for it, which by the time they release it they've missed the boat. Should be a learning experience, but they keep repeating this idiotic strategy.

Re:Points to a larger cultural problem at MS (1)

amliebsch (724858) | more than 2 years ago | (#37599850)

That's because Microsoft Research is doing more or less "pure" research work, not product R&D.

Re:Points to a larger cultural problem at MS (3, Interesting)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 2 years ago | (#37600150)

The only problem with this is that their research doesn't seem to have resulted in much in the way of actual products or improvements to products. Sure, they made a pretty cool photography tool recently, and there was Clippy (which everyone hated), but what real groundbreaking improvements to MS products have come out of their research? Windows 7 really isn't that different from Windows 95 (except for the kernel and architecture, which really came from a guy they hired who was the main guy for VMS).

By contrast, we use the products of IBM's research every day. I still remember when IBM developed the copper-on-silicon process back in the 90s, and this was revolutionary. Now, every CPU has it. That's just one of many breakthroughs they've contributed to computing.

Re:Points to a larger cultural problem at MS (1)

nine-times (778537) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598364)

Well this is probably a move to increase focus, because who is going to buy a Zune? Aside from the iPod being so dominant, stand-alone MP3 players are going away as consumer smart phones take over. If you really want a Zune music player, you'll probably get a Windows-based phone instead.

Monthly cost of a Windows Phone (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598452)

If you really want a Zune music player, you'll probably get a Windows-based phone instead.

Some people carry a dumbphone and either an iPod touch or an Archos 43 to use as a PMP/PDA because smartphone service is so expensive in the United States. Are there any Windows-based phones that work on $10/mo prepaid "just for urgencies" calling plans?

Re:Monthly cost of a Windows Phone (1)

Canazza (1428553) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598646)

you don't need a smart phone to play music. I have a perfectly reasonable dumb phone Nokia from about 3 years ago that plays all the mp3s I want it to. Sure it's interface is lacking the finer points of playlist making (it does it, but you have to fight with it) but I don't particularly care.

Re:Monthly cost of a Windows Phone (1)

CubicleView (910143) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598912)

MS doesn't care much about your phone either. They do care about people that want to buy smartphones.

Re:Monthly cost of a Windows Phone (1)

vlm (69642) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598656)

Some people carry a dumbphone and either an iPod touch or an Archos 43 to use as a PMP/PDA because smartphone service is so expensive in the United States

1) Corporate phones don't allow end user to fool around with music and video. If the company is paying for it, the workers are not allowed to play. Email and text and stuff, sure, but listen to pirated mp3s on corporate property? Not if they can stop it... Maybe the execs will be allowed to do so, fitting in with the culture of keeping the little guy down, etc.

2) I can not afford from a business standpoint to be out of touch because I listened to music draining the battery while I work out. I'm amazed no one has come out with a smartphone using a separate battery or some firmware that lets you do "whatever the manufacturer allows" down to 50% and then voice telephone only for the bottom 50% of battery capacity. I'm sure there is a expensive patent preventing it.

3) I don't much care if I drop my $20 mp3 player while doing physical activities (yard work, exercise, heavy housework, whatever). I'd be really sad if I dropped a $500 phone while jogging because I wanted to listen to music.

4) I don't care if I drain and charge the battery on my $20 mp3 player so many times it turns into junk in six months. I'd be pissed if I destroyed my $500 phone battery that quickly. Its simply too expensive to fool around with a smartphone, if there's a pocket-change alternative to fool around with.

5) Out in public, I'd be pissed if my $500 phone were lost or stolen or mugged from me. My $20 mp3 player, heck no one is gonna take that.

Re:Monthly cost of a Windows Phone (1)

pacinpm (631330) | more than 2 years ago | (#37599010)

I'm amazed no one has come out with a smartphone using a separate battery or some firmware that lets you do "whatever the manufacturer allows" down to 50% and then voice telephone only for the bottom 50% of battery capacity. I'm sure there is a expensive patent preventing it.

WP7 does that. I am not sure if you can set the power treshold.

Re:Monthly cost of a Windows Phone (1)

dunkelfalke (91624) | more than 2 years ago | (#37599056)

Well, fear of the expensive phone being dropped or stolen is valid, but all real phones out there have got a replaceable battery so if you really cannot be bothered to check the battery status sometimes, then you still could carry a spare battery with you. They aren't heavy. And since replacement batteries are cheap, you can always get a fresh one if your old doesn't hold its charge. As for me, I use my HD2 every day for music and ebooks, the battery is still strong after almost two years.

Re:Monthly cost of a Windows Phone (1)

hjf (703092) | more than 2 years ago | (#37600196)

HEH was that a stab at the iPhone? You know, because it doesn't have a user-replaceable battery.

Re:Monthly cost of a Windows Phone (1)

Tridus (79566) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598712)

"Some people" do. Are some people enough to sustain a profitable business?

Considering the Zune never did that well against the iPod and that it's now a declining market? Probably not.

Re:Monthly cost of a Windows Phone (1)

dunkelfalke (91624) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598884)

All unlocked GSM phones (maybe except for iPhone, I don't know for sure) work with all GSM SIM cards. You can also buy a phone and don't use it as a phone, no one forces you to get an expensive plan with it.

Re:Monthly cost of a Windows Phone (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 2 years ago | (#37599096)

All unlocked GSM phones (maybe except for iPhone, I don't know for sure) work with all GSM SIM cards.

Neither GSM phones nor GSM SIM cards work with Verizon Wireless or Sprint. Let me know when Virgin Mobile USA, one of Sprint's prepaid brands, has Windows phones.

You can also buy a phone and don't use it as a phone

Why buy a $500 Windows phone when one can get an iPod touch or Archos 43 for half that?

Re:Monthly cost of a Windows Phone (1)

dunkelfalke (91624) | more than 2 years ago | (#37599406)

Neither GSM phones nor GSM SIM cards work with Verizon Wireless or Sprint. Let me know when Virgin Mobile USA, one of Sprint's prepaid brands, has Windows phones.

Now you are being picky. Use a GSM provider, there you'll have a free choice of handsets and contracts.

Why buy a $500 Windows phone when one can get an iPod touch or Archos 43 for half that?

Well, I've paid EUR520 (was around $700 back then) for my HTC HD2 (with Windows Mobile 6.5 actually) because it was, at that time, the most versatile handheld. Nowadays and in the USA the devices are way cheaper. You can buy a new unlocked HD7 for $350, not $500, which favourably compares to other recent PDA phones and to the devices you've mentioned (and is still cheaper than EUR400 I would have to pay for it)

AT&T is the only US GSM provider (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 2 years ago | (#37600136)

Use a GSM provider

AT&T and a carrier soon to be bought by AT&T are the only nationwide GSM carriers in the United States, and I've read plenty of reports in Slashdot comments about poor service on AT&T.

Re: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37598886)

I will buy a non-phone version of a WP7 device as soon as MSFT offers it. The $25/month Virgin Mobile plan is more than adequate for my cell phone needs. $80/month for a full-blown cell phone is not in the cards.

Re:Points to a larger cultural problem at MS (1)

WuphonsReach (684551) | more than 2 years ago | (#37599002)

Well this is probably a move to increase focus, because who is going to buy a Zune? Aside from the iPod being so dominant, stand-alone MP3 players are going away as consumer smart phones take over. If you really want a Zune music player, you'll probably get a Windows-based phone instead.

Meh, unless the phone is tiny and light, the dedicated MP3 player serves far better over the long run in terms of battery life and cost. My little 8GB Sansa Fuze is on the larger end of the size scale but I much prefer it over fighting with my cell phone to just play music. And it only cost about $40-$50.

Re:Points to a larger cultural problem at MS (1)

nine-times (778537) | more than 2 years ago | (#37599968)

Meh, unless the phone is tiny and light...

Most likely, carrying your phone and carrying an MP3 player is heavier and takes up more room than carrying a phone that does both. If you're "fighting with your cell phone to just play music" then I guess you have a crappy phone.

Re:Points to a larger cultural problem at MS (1)

satuon (1822492) | more than 2 years ago | (#37600012)

The MP3 player is smaller, but a phone is the thing almost anyone carries almost all the time in their pockets. So it's not a small MP3 player vs. a phone, it's a small MP3 player + a phone vs. a phone only. And if your phone is playing music anyway, most people wouldn't carry a yet another device in their pockets.

Re:Points to a larger cultural problem at MS (2)

plover (150551) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598372)

I'm starting to see this problem in Google too. Google seems to be going off in a million different directions lately, with no apparent overarching plan.

Something recently has started to happen to counter this exact thing at Google. Someone high-up shut down Google Labs last month, and ended most of those projects. It was supposedly a part of renewing their focus on their core business. And while it often seems like Google's core business is "being cool", being cool doesn't exactly pay the bills, so I suppose they have to figure out more new things to generate revenue.

What are some of the million new directions you see coming out of Google?

Re:Points to a larger cultural problem at MS (1)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598754)

What are some of the million new directions you see coming out of Google?

Is there any trend in the last few years that Google HASN'T knocked off? Let's see Google+, Wave, Chrome, Android, AppStores, real world Chrome stores, Chrome OS, Chrome laptops, etc. And that's not even counting the *tons* of smaller stuff they've done (Google Swiffy, Google Body, City Tours, Google Goggles, Google Squared, Google Mars, Google Earth, Google Maps, to name just a FEW).

Would you like me to go on, or is that enough?

Re:Points to a larger cultural problem at MS (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37599464)

Is there any trend in the last few years that Google HASN'T knocked off?

Google Streetview.

Also I don't see how ChromeOS and Chromebooks are not innovative.

Re:Points to a larger cultural problem at MS (1)

vlm (69642) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598540)

Sadly, I'm starting to see this problem in Google too. Google seems to be going off in a million different directions lately, with no apparent overarching plan.

Applies if you've only been watching "lately" or "recently". Otherwise, not so.

Could cut and paste the same tired argument from the announcement of gmail, or the announcement of news.google.com or .. pretty much anything GOOG has ever done other than the basic search page.

Re:Points to a larger cultural problem at MS (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37598722)

Can't really compare Apple with Google. It's like comparing apples and oranges (yeah, I know). Apple has been in the business for 20-30 years and it's trying to take over the world one market at a time. They usually gain the upper hand for a short time, only to lose it half a year later. Google after 13 years had almost complete dominance from the beginning with it's search engine. Whatever their way of thinking, it's certainly something never been seen before, so, don't pull predictions out of thin air.

Re:Points to a larger cultural problem at MS (3, Insightful)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 2 years ago | (#37599378)

Microsoft: The "Me, too" company

Re:Points to a larger cultural problem at MS (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37599446)

You sure it has nothing to do with being YEARS late to the overpriced DMP party?

(and what was with Zune needing it's own software, why wouldn't it work with Media Player?)

Re:Points to a larger cultural problem at MS (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37599740)

Zune may be un-dead, they should rename the MS-Zombie

As Coroner... (3, Funny)

Jawnn (445279) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598252)

"...it's not only merely dead, but really most sincerely dead."

Re:As Coroner... (2)

bmo (77928) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598954)

Came for the Wizard of Oz reference, leaving satisfied.

--
BMO

Re:As Coroner... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37599008)

Miracle Max: There's a big difference between mostly dead and all dead. Mostly dead is slightly alive. With all dead, well, with all dead there's usually only one thing you can do.
Inigo Montoya: What's that?
Miracle Max: Go through his clothes and look for loose change.
— The Princess Bride

Re:As Coroner... (1)

Nimey (114278) | more than 2 years ago | (#37599298)

It's pining for the fjords!

Actually a shame. (1)

dyingtolive (1393037) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598258)

In spite of all the shit it got, I really liked the hardware. The interface with the computer was...interesting, we'll say, but just swiping a four way control pad makes far more sense to me that massaging a circle in a trendy clockwise circle.

Oh well, long live Pandora on Android. (For some small definitions of "long". Stupid battery life.)

Re:Actually a shame. (1)

plover (150551) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598480)

But did you like it enough to carry a Zune plus a mobile phone? As soon as I got a phone that played music, I ditched the separate MP3 player, never to carry it again.

Zune's biggest problem here is that even modestly smart phones now cover the portable music playing needs of most people. The dedicated hardware was priced about the same as a smart phone without the phone, meaning as a consumer I could pay more for a lame phone and good music player, or I could buy an integrated device for less.

This was just Microsoft analyzing their cards and wisely folding their hand, as there are few winning scenarios in the music player market anymore. I suspect the iPod will likely suffer a similar fate, so it makes me wonder how long it will take Apple to come to the same conclusion?

Re:Actually a shame. (1)

bryan1945 (301828) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598556)

I wonder how popular the iNano (or whatever it's called) is? Really tiny thing you can clip to your shirt and go for a run. And I think it's fairly cheap, too ($50 or so?)

Re:Actually a shame. (1)

UnknowingFool (672806) | more than 2 years ago | (#37599490)

Anecdotally I see that it is very popular with runners because it's cheap and small. I know alot of runners who didn't like it when Apple went with the buttonless version and were glad when they changed back.

Re:Actually a shame. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37598994)

I did. I don't want to play music on my mobile phone, because I don't want to have to recharge it before 3pm.

The Zune software was better then iTunes as well. It auto-discovered new music, so every time you bought something from another place or ripped a CD you didn't have to manually add the folder. It's an obvious example of Apple's walled garden approach -- expressing shock you would get your music from somewhere other than their store, then adding a hurdle to punish you for your daring.

Re:Actually a shame. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37599286)

WAAAAHHH... Dragging and dropping things into a library window in iTunes is soo hard!!!

Re:Actually a shame. (1)

UnknowingFool (672806) | more than 2 years ago | (#37599584)

You need to check your settings. My iTunes automatically recognizes new music. I think it has to do with where you rip. If you set it up to where all ripped music goes into music folder and point iTunes to that folder and subfoldee, it picks it up. Also I think there is a "Scan for all new music" option but I turned that off because it would make the computer slow.

Re:Actually a shame. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37598996)

I carry with my Zune 120 and my cell with me all the time. I only use my cell for talking and texting, I cannot afford a smart phone, but I am happy with my Zune I have own it for three years and never had any problems with it. My son has gone through 3 I-Pods in the same period of time, they keep going bad on him.

Re:Actually a shame. (1)

dyingtolive (1393037) | more than 2 years ago | (#37599768)

Well, kind of. I've had my 8 gig Zune (the little flash one) since prior to having a smart phone. My car has a cd player with no line in, so nowadays it stays constantly in my car with the FM transmitter/charger that I also bought to go along with it. Only reason it leaves is to change the music. My big problem with phone music players is that I feel like it drains the battery so fast. Admittedly, this is while usually listening to Pandora, so there's a data transfer element there as well as just listening to music, but still. I also don't have a large enough storage space on my phone for much music as I'm still using the 2gb stock Micro SD. But I have a good sound system at home, the Zune for the car, and then good headphones and access to Pandora at work, so the desire for a portable media player I can take anywhere is just not really prevalent in my life. The times I go for a walk or jog are actually the few times I actually 'unplug'. I'd rather not cloud my thoughts then with more of what I've been listening to literally all day.

I do agree with your assessment of phones driving the death of the Zune. I am kind of surprised that the iPad isn't nearing the same end, but it's the thing that really put Apple back in the mainstream, so I could see it being reluctantly phased out until there is absolutely zero demand.

round and round and round (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37598776)

just swiping a four way control pad makes far more sense to me that massaging a circle in a trendy clockwise circle.
 

Yeah, well, I'm sure this whole "opposable thumbs" thing is just a hipster fad. I wouldn't worry about it.

Re:round and round and round (1)

dyingtolive (1393037) | more than 2 years ago | (#37600108)

Well, maybe my comment was a little snarky, but I have nerve damage in my left thumb due to a rather deep laceration in the meat of it from a few years ago. I can move it in a circle, but it's awkward and slow, so I would either have to use it in my right hand or fumble at it longer than I should need to with my left. I realize my case is a fringe one, but that makes it no less applicable to me. However, neither your comment nor my situation not being relevant to the majority of people out there changes the fact that, at the end of the day, "clockwise = down" is less intuitive than "down = down".

It's not dead (1)

js3 (319268) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598284)

Ever WP7 comes with a zune player, basically they stopped selling dedicated zune hardware and you can use your phone for that now. Software and zune pass still available.

What's the monthly TCO? (2)

tepples (727027) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598534)

So now if I want to buy a Zune^W Windows phone, and I'm not already using a cell phone as a replacement for a home phone, I'll have to pay $40 a month for voice service that I will barely use.

Re:What's the monthly TCO? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37598882)

Grown ups, people with social and family commitments, generally have cell phones. Unrelated to whether or not its a Windows phone, you should consider joining this century.

Re:What's the monthly TCO? (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 2 years ago | (#37599070)

Grown ups, people with social and family commitments, generally have cell phones.

I agree. But there's a difference between a $120 per year plan and an $800 per year plan, and the big U.S. carriers don't want to offer the latter to people buying smartphones.

Re:What's the monthly TCO? (1)

dunkelfalke (91624) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598984)

What are you talking about? You can buy (for example) a HTC HD7 for around $350 without any contract.

Re:It's not dead (1)

Quila (201335) | more than 2 years ago | (#37599220)

So it's not dead, it's just pretending to be a phone, all the while pining for the fjords.

Srsly (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37598286)

"...It appears MS has trouble with managing their PR."

No, really?

Too bad (1)

LWATCDR (28044) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598290)

I was thinking about getting a ZuneHD. I heard that it was a really nice device and had great sound.
Microsoft killing the Zune probably makes sense in the short term but I think it is foolish long term.
Apple still sells a lot of iPod Touches they are a gaming device and media devices. Frankly Microsoft should have called WP7 the Zune Phone and keep the Zune line around. The Zune HDs replacement could have run WP7. Microsoft could still do it but what would you call the device? A Windows not phone 7?

Re:Too bad (3, Interesting)

Missing.Matter (1845576) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598330)

Why not still get one? It's still a great piece of hardware. The ecosystem is still supported, and there's no sign they'll be abandoning it any time soon. In fact, they recently expanded the Zune marketplace into Canada.

Re:Too bad (2)

UnknowingFool (672806) | more than 2 years ago | (#37599880)

What about apps? Can you run WP7 apps on the Zune? As far as I remember the answer was "iffy". I could be wrong about that but not having apps is somewhat of a negative.

Re:Too bad (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37598402)

I have a Zune HD, it's quite buggy. Sometimes it reboots our of nowhere, sometimes I have to turn it off and back on for the touch screen to work. Also the web browser is really weak.

On the other hand, the few apps are free and accessories have gotten pretty cheap on Amazon. You can get the previous generation dock for ten bucks. After this announcement, I'm guessing the latest dock will get cheap too.

Re:Too bad (1)

DinDaddy (1168147) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598628)

Makes me wonder if they thought only kids bought ipods when they chose the name Zune. And were therefore afraid branding the phones as Zune would limit their appeal. I don't wonder at all about the stupid insistence on including the name "windows" in a product that has no windows, though. They are hopelessly stuck in that "must keep mindshare on windows brand" mindset.

Re:Too bad (1)

LWATCDR (28044) | more than 2 years ago | (#37599866)

You have a point. Microsoft has the XBox which is popular and even cool. The problem is that name XBox didn't work for the music player. Maybe XTune? And then XPhone.
Let's face it Windows doesn't just lack any cache in the phone market it has a negative value. Had Microsoft started off linking their consumer branding they might have gotten some more traction. I thought it was really odd that one couldn't sync their Zunes with the XBox instead of the computer. Hook it up to your system and pop in CD after CD to rip and use it as a media server as well as your gaming system.

Re:Too bad (1)

UnknowingFool (672806) | more than 2 years ago | (#37599700)

The problem is the MS long term strategy was not coherent here when it comes to apps. The Zune could run apps but not WP7 apps as far as I know. A new Zune might run WP7 apps but not old Zune apps. Apple made the iPhone first and then the Touch and ensured almost all iPhone apps would work on the Touch. The apps that don't work are the ones that are phone specific.

That sucks (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37598296)

The Zune was a great product marketed horribly. It's high-quality hardware with an excellent interface that works beautifully with a great service. If Microsoft had made a phoneless version of Windows Phone 7 as a replacement for the Zune HD, I would have bought it day one. Unfortunately Zune has been poorly managed from day one and the world has been robbed of a well-engineered system.

Sell it to HP (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37598304)

They could have spent a ton, merged it with Palm, and killed the Hardware off for them.

Let this be a lesson... (1)

nman64 (912054) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598308)

Aim for the head and leave no questions.

My Windows Phone... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37598314)

The music I downloaded with Zune onto my windows phone would barely work, sometimes loaded super slow and was just a giant pain in the ass. Never had as much trouble with iTunes and my old iPhone. Microsoft really dropped the ball... again. PS - I'm posting from my Mac.

Re:My Windows Phone... (2, Funny)

dyingtolive (1393037) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598342)

Surprised you could see the keyboard well enough to type from that cloud of smug that surrounds you.

Inevitable... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37598338)

...they really didn't have any choice but to axe it after even Ashton Kutcher's character on Two And A Half Men payed out on it. When you're getting pwned by a *replacement* character on a sitcom, it really is curtains.

"Long Live the Zune" ... not. (1)

Gimbal (2474818) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598346)

/oblig reference to a book by T.H. White (and not)/

Well, seriously, the only reason I can guess for why the Zune is still on the market is because Microsoft has a large budget for keeping it there. There are plenty of arguments about the methods and approach of the Apple company, but in all their Apple-ness, the iPod/iPhone/iPad platform really is the trump onto anything similar.

I'm not one to suspect Microsoft of developing innovative designs, ever, so (I"ll admit), I haven't even bothered to take a look at the Zune platform (or the article, heh). To my own ears, it has the ring of a flash in the pan, simply enough.

Re:"Long Live the Zune" ... not. (1)

r0k3t (1142151) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598408)

Actually - Zune is not dead, the platform has simply been integrated into the windows phone - how many people are out there buying ipod's these days... It only makes sense - as these devices continue to integrate it's the right thing to do - Windows Phone 7 isn't perfect yet however it's very promising and I think they are on the right track.

Re:"Long Live the Zune" ... not. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37598532)

An ipod is a one off purchase, you do not need an iphone plus its $2000+ contracts if all you want to do is have a portable media player.

Re:"Long Live the Zune" ... not. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37598840)

Considering that Windows Phone is in third or fourth place in market share, Zune might not be dead, but it is certainly on life support.

Honor orders... with ZOMBIE ZUNES!!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37598352)

Microsoft is finally trying to cash in on the zombie craze that swept the nation last year. Now, a few lucky people will be able to own Undead Zombie Zunes. They're just like regular Zunes, but... zombies!

Schrodinger's PMP? (2)

Bushwuly (585191) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598466)

... at one point dead and alive at the same time?

Queue antitrust suit against Apple (1)

ZeroSerenity (923363) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598502)

In 3...2...1... Seriously. Who else makes a media player that can compete?

Re:Queue antitrust suit against Apple (1)

cwgmpls (853876) | more than 2 years ago | (#37599438)

Every discount store in the country has at least a half-dozen non-apple MP3 players for under $50.

Re:Queue antitrust suit against Apple (1)

UnknowingFool (672806) | more than 2 years ago | (#37599818)

I doubt that any anti-trust suit would go far. You can pick up dozens of Mp3 players at Best Buy, Walmart, etc and they will play the standard MP3s and even AAC. Except for the DRM'ed FairPlay which Apple no longer really sells, iTunes music will play on many players. Video is another matter which is still under the control of the copyright holders.

My first thought (2)

MonsterTrimble (1205334) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598554)

Excellent - now they'll be super cheap on eBay!

Seriously, who cares that the Zune is no longer produced? It's an MP3 player. Few people would get them serviced so warranty work is pointless. Heck, I always loved the Rio and if the capacity was tiny compared to relatively newer models, I'd still get one.

And fuck everyone - I liked the brown model.

iPods (1)

Rik Sweeney (471717) | more than 2 years ago | (#37598676)

I'm not surprised, everyone has iPods these days, even Carter Pewterschmidt [youtu.be] .

Zune dead then not dead then officially dead (1)

alexo (9335) | more than 2 years ago | (#37599188)

It's a zunbie!

Zune And Napster All In The Same Week??? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37599366)

Oh sweet rapture, can this really be the end?!?!

I thought it died long ago. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37599496)

Bought one, kept for 2 days then exchanged it for an iPad. I honestly didn't know it was still around.

crickets (1)

Cartman's Mom (1956666) | more than 2 years ago | (#37599934)

first I didn't care...then I didn't, and now I still don't.

SHAME! (1)

GameboyRMH (1153867) | more than 2 years ago | (#37600154)

At this time I cannot find one reference on this page to the Monty Python dead parrot skit. This is an outrage!

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