Zune HD

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http://news.cnet.com/8301-13860_3-10...

Ok. That is a sexy piece of hardware and the zune software is pretty nice already. I'm hoping Microsoft is going to make a real play to the MP3 market.

Anyone else planning on picking one of these up? I know I am.

Looks very cool, especially the OLED screen -- that tech's obviously improving now. I still don't think it's quite for me, though, since I'm still not sold on touch screens (I like buttons damnit!), and it's probably still tied to Windows (though I do have a 360, and the 360 integration sounds interesting). Either way, MS probably won't still it in Australia anyway.

Wow. That's nice. In fact I'd say it looks a hell of a lot better than the current iPhone/iPod Touch, although we don't know what the new OLED version will be like.

I don't see it replacing my 120.

And "a real play to the MP3 market"? You sure it's not the "likes fancy new things" market?

It certainly looks great and I do love the Zune software and featureset, but OLED? What kind of ridiculous price is the thing going to come out for?

$250 for the Zune 80gb when it came out was a stretch for me. I really had to work myself up to it. If this thing releases for more than that there's pretty much zero chance I'll ever own one.

Not mentioned in that article is the new aspect of Xbox 360 integration.

Ulairi wrote:

I'm hoping Microsoft is going to make a real play to the MP3 market.

Is this just a reflex anti-MS remark or do you really believe they haven't done this already? Have you missed the pages-long "Anybody Zune?" thread?
Please tell me you were just bashing the current offering because bashing MS is the easy thing to do.

On the actual hardware, sure, it's nice, the HD output, however, will not be internal. Touchscreen is ok, but I like being able to keep the Zune in my pocket and blindly pause/play/volume/etc by feel, and I'm not sure that even MS will be able to trim down IE enough to make it zippy on the hardware.

In short, they already have a real play in the MP3/MP4 market. Now they're branching out, but they were already "better" than the iPod, IMO. Look for a repeat of XBox here. That's my prediction. Zero to Dominant in a couple short years. They just need to make whatever they're going to use as the "Live" hook just as indispensable and good as Live. Sony couldn't stop them and I doubt Apple can here.

Touchscreen is ok, but I like being able to keep the Zune in my pocket and blindly pause/play/volume/etc by feel

I can't understand why Microsoft (or Apple with their iPod too, for that matter) can't engineer a decent wireless remote interface. This would make touchscreen interface so much more useable in outdoors/fitness scenarios. Apple and Nike actually came close to that when Nike released Fit+ wristband -- only to discontinue it a short while later.

duckilama wrote:

In short, they already have a real play in the MP3/MP4 market. Now they're branching out, but they were already "better" than the iPod, IMO. Look for a repeat of XBox here. That's my prediction. Zero to Dominant in a couple short years. They just need to make whatever they're going to use as the "Live" hook just as indispensable and good as Live. Sony couldn't stop them and I doubt Apple can here.

It'd take a whole hell of a lot more to beat Apple than a well designed piece of hardware here. This is nothing like the 360/PS3 fight for a lot of reasons.

Asz wrote:
duckilama wrote:

In short, they already have a real play in the MP3/MP4 market. Now they're branching out, but they were already "better" than the iPod, IMO. Look for a repeat of XBox here. That's my prediction. Zero to Dominant in a couple short years. They just need to make whatever they're going to use as the "Live" hook just as indispensable and good as Live. Sony couldn't stop them and I doubt Apple can here.

It'd take a whole hell of a lot more to beat Apple than a well designed piece of hardware here. This is nothing like the 360/PS3 fight for a lot of reasons.

I wasn't talking about 360/PS3. MS had already won by that point. The XBox/PS2 was the real battle. They were already a major player in the market. This gen is just drawing the treaty lines.
I'm not saying the Zune is at the 360 point. Yet. It's still in the XBox stage, fighting the battle, but it is a real play already. It's just a matter of time now.

And I already addressed your more-than-good-hardware point in the quote you (didn't really) respond to.

I want one. That is all.

duckilama wrote:
Ulairi wrote:

I'm hoping Microsoft is going to make a real play to the MP3 market.

Is this just a reflex anti-MS remark or do you really believe they haven't done this already? Have you missed the pages-long "Anybody Zune?" thread?
Please tell me you were just bashing the current offering because bashing MS is the easy thing to do.

I don't see how Ulairi's comment can be taken as some "anti-MS" remark. Regardless of its popularity on GWJ, the Zune's numbers compared to the iPod speak for themselves. I'm not bringing this up to get into a "this is better than this" debate, just to mention the fact that MS has not made much of a dent at all into Apple's marketshare or the "hearts and minds" of the average consumer.

I react to this new Zune as I did to the others, though-- it looks nice, and I'm sure it will be a wonderful player, but it doesn't do anything much different than what the Touch has been doing for the last two years.

The funny thing is, I am actually waiting for a 64GB Touch to launch before buying one. If MS can give me a similar Zune HD in that capacity for a similar or BETTER price, I definitely might consider it. The biggest problem I think the Zune faces right now is the fact that the Apple App Store is so completely dominant-- thousands and thousands of free/paid apps of any and all description. To me, that right there is probably enough to swing me into the Touch camp. Will MS have a similar service? They BETTER if they hope to win customers. Will it be as robust as Apple's? No telling right now, which is also kind of a problem. Curious to see what the 360 integration is going to look like, although again I don't think that will be a major factor for most people in the general public.

SommerMatt wrote:

The biggest problem I think the Zune faces right now is the fact that the Apple App Store is so completely dominant-- thousands and thousands of free/paid apps of any and all description. To me, that right there is probably enough to swing me into the Touch camp. Will MS have a similar service? They BETTER if they hope to win customers. Will it be as robust as Apple's? No telling right now, which is also kind of a problem. Curious to see what the 360 integration is going to look like, although again I don't think that will be a major factor for most people in the general public.

What if the 360 integration is the MS "app-store"? If they could get XBLA on it, Apple would be in quite the predicament.

If not, putting it out at the same price would idiotic.

I hope those screws mean a user replaceable battery.

Nice one Asz.

Captain_Arrrg wrote:
SommerMatt wrote:

The biggest problem I think the Zune faces right now is the fact that the Apple App Store is so completely dominant-- thousands and thousands of free/paid apps of any and all description. To me, that right there is probably enough to swing me into the Touch camp. Will MS have a similar service? They BETTER if they hope to win customers. Will it be as robust as Apple's? No telling right now, which is also kind of a problem. Curious to see what the 360 integration is going to look like, although again I don't think that will be a major factor for most people in the general public.

What if the 360 integration is the MS "app-store"? If they could get XBLA on it, Apple would be in quite the predicament.

If not, putting it out at the same price would idiotic.

I think XBLA would be a great starting point, but I still don't think that would put Apple in any predicament... there are just simply too many apps available, including GAMES (free, almost free, and premium), for even the XBLA content to be a huge advantage. With a touch only interface, the new Zune will also lose any kind of advantage as a gaming device with a dedicated gamepad/button layout that is the Touch/iPhone's weak link.

SommerMatt wrote:
Captain_Arrrg wrote:
SommerMatt wrote:

The biggest problem I think the Zune faces right now is the fact that the Apple App Store is so completely dominant-- thousands and thousands of free/paid apps of any and all description. To me, that right there is probably enough to swing me into the Touch camp. Will MS have a similar service? They BETTER if they hope to win customers. Will it be as robust as Apple's? No telling right now, which is also kind of a problem. Curious to see what the 360 integration is going to look like, although again I don't think that will be a major factor for most people in the general public.

What if the 360 integration is the MS "app-store"? If they could get XBLA on it, Apple would be in quite the predicament.

If not, putting it out at the same price would idiotic.

I think XBLA would be a great starting point, but I still don't think that would put Apple in any predicament... there are just simply too many apps available, including GAMES (free, almost free, and premium), for even the XBLA content to be a huge advantage. With a touch only interface, the new Zune will also lose any kind of advantage as a gaming device with a dedicated gamepad/button layout that is the Touch/iPhone's weak link.

Agreed...short of some miracle wacky sauce to make XBLA Arcade games work both on the 360 and the Zune I'm not sure how this steals any of that share from the Iphone.. unless of course the games that are made are quality titles.

Ghe storage on this thing will be what makes or breaks it for me - judging by the specs, it is going to be clocking in at $300 at least and thats w/out any info on storage - if you're going to do an HD playback type device, then it should start around 80G and more realisticly 120G - but that size would put the price up closer to $400 or $500.

If it costs that much, then it becomes VERY HARD to sneak this past the missus.

Gorilla.800.lbs wrote:

There is no way the control schemes in the absolute majority of XBLA games can be ported to a all-touch-based user interface.

If they put Dominion on it I will buy it. There, the gauntlet has been thrown.

There is no way the control schemes in the absolute majority of XBLA games can be ported to an all-touch-based user interface.

Am I the only one that thinks even the Zune HD looks concerned for its existence?

IMAGE(http://img20.imageshack.us/img20/6497/zune0527.jpg)

TexasRay wrote:

Ghe storage on this thing will be what makes or breaks it for me - judging by the specs, it is going to be clocking in at $300 at least and thats w/out any info on storage - if you're going to do an HD playback type device, then it should start around 80G and more realisticly 120G - but that size would put the price up closer to $400 or $500.

If it costs that much, then it becomes VERY HARD to sneak this past the missus. :(

Why would it need to be that big for HD playback? They could do 32GB and that would allow a few HD movies, music, and everything on it.

What's the sound quality like on Zunes? It's pretty miserable on iPods these days. They used to be marvelous, but they've gone way, way downhill.

Malor wrote:

What's the sound quality like on Zunes? It's pretty miserable on iPods these days. They used to be marvelous, but they've gone way, way downhill.

Sounds good to me but I'm not an audio head.

Thin_J wrote:

I hope those screws mean a user replaceable battery.

Those are T4 screws... Not an easy screwdriver to get (I have one, but then again, I replaced my Zune 80 battery, so I needed one).

The touchscreen is cool but unless a whole bunch of interesting apps come out on in, I'll probably be sticking with my 120 Zune. I already barely watch video on those things to begin with, especially since they suck up so much battery life.

Malor wrote:

What's the sound quality like on Zunes? It's pretty miserable on iPods these days. They used to be marvelous, but they've gone way, way downhill.

The earphones they come with on the newest version are not surprisingly as crappy as they come, but the actual device sound quality is great.

Looks nice on paper.

But I don't see an iPod killer yet.

HD playback seems redundant to a 360 owner which is the universe the Zune seems to be tying itself into. Focus on radio and dock will surely net some users that want that stuff, but it seems like the market at large doesn't care much about those features.

I agree iPod's killer app is the App Store (and iTunes as well.) Otherwise there is not alot stopping the competition from gradually eroding Apple's market share as they catch up to Apple on the hardware/software fronts.

NSMike wrote:
Thin_J wrote:

I hope those screws mean a user replaceable battery.

Those are T4 screws... Not an easy screwdriver to get (I have one, but then again, I replaced my Zune 80 battery, so I needed one).

I have more than one. I'm pretty sure I have just about every ridiculous tiny screwdriver type I'll ever need for the rest of my life, barring them inventing new ones.

Thin_J wrote:

I have more than one. I'm pretty sure I have just about every ridiculous tiny screwdriver type I'll ever need for the rest of my life, barring them inventing new ones.

I invented one, shaped like a unicorn.

Quintin_Stone wrote:
Thin_J wrote:

I have more than one. I'm pretty sure I have just about every ridiculous tiny screwdriver type I'll ever need for the rest of my life, barring them inventing new ones.

I invented one, shaped like a unicorn.

Dick.

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