Analyst: Microsoft Zune won’t spoil Apple’s biggest iPod Christmas ever

“Two days after Apple refreshed and lowered the prices on its iPod line (and thereby wrought havoc on Microsoft’s launch plans), Microsoft today announced its own 30 Gigabyte Zune music player,” Carl Howe, principal analyst, writes for Blackfriars’ marketing. “This first product in the Zune line is, in fact, a rebadged Toshiba Gigabeat. It offers an FM tuner, will be available in black, brown, and white, and will provide wireless connectivity between Zune devices. In its press release, Microsoft commented on the Zune-to-Zune wireless sharing:”

Wireless Zune-to-Zune sharing lets consumers spontaneously share full-length sample tracks of select songs, homemade recordings, playlists or pictures with friends between Zune devices. Listen to the full track of any song you receive up to three times over three days. If you like a song you hear and want to buy it, you can flag it right on your device and easily purchase it from the Zune Marketplace.

Howe writes, “That sounds pretty restrictive from where we sit and a far cry from a the unlimited WiFi sharing previously rumored. It will be interesting to see consumer reaction to this feature and whether it actually drives or inhibits Zune sales.”

“Pre-announcing a product without pricing, availability, and actual services is just a waste of a press release… with Microsoft laying out the major features of Zune now, it is letting consumers compare Apple’s new fifth generation iPods with Zunes head-to-head with an important distinction: consumers can buy Apple iPods and can’t buy Zunes,” Howe writes.

Howe writes, “Microsoft may have thought it needed to do this announcement to respond to Steve Jobs’ event this week and staunch the new flood of iPod sales. But if Microsoft thought they were going to spoil Apple’s biggest iPod Christmas ever, it just threw away one of its chances to do so.”

Full article here.

Related articles:
Microsoft unveils Zune 30GB player, Zune Marketplace; declines to disclose prices – September 14, 2006
Microsoft sees room in music player market for ‘Zune’ to challenge Apple’s dominant iPod – September 06, 2006
Analyst: Microsoft’s Zune an ‘underwhelming’ repackaged Toshiba Gigabeat; no threat to Apple iPod – August 30, 2006
Microsoft confirms brick-like Zune to be made by Toshiba – August 25, 2006
Microsoft Zune is chunky brick made by Toshiba – August 25, 2006
Microsoft to spend hundreds of millions, several years on Zune trying to catch Apple iPod+iTunes – July 27, 2006
Zune: Apple cannot lose. Microsoft cannot win. – July 26, 2006

52 Comments

  1. Zune may be a big winner if they give it away and charge for the music.

    Before you laugh, they did something similar with IE. Netscape was the better browser, but then IE was free and came on every computer, no one was going to buy from Netscape when they could get it for free.

    If M$ threw in a free zune with each purchase of Vista, they could claim a larger market share than Apple in a very short time.

    Wouldn’t be the first time Microsoft did something like this, the local drug dealer does the same thing.

  2. Yeah, the chances of finding another Zune-buying sucker to share songs with will be pretty slim, I’m sure.

    I still can’t believe shit brown is a color choice for this thing. It’s like making someone hit themselves with their hand (“stop hitting yourself, stop hitting yourself”) but you don’t even have to touch them! THAT’S INSANE!!!

  3. Schmutz! –

    That would explain why there isn’t a price listed.
    You may be right:
    Zip beatout Syquest
    VHS beat Betamax
    USB beat Firewire
    Windows beat Mac OS (Classic, back when there was a Mac OS)

    History has showed that inferior can dominate, if it’s cheap enough.

  4. I think we can all breath a collective sigh of relief… this is going to bomb!

    However…they will advertise it to the hilt. They do have deep pockets. They aren’t concerned about profit just stealing market share. Lots of people out there still think Microsoft = reliability, ok… thats stretching it a bit but they do have mass appeal. Hey, Windows works sort of, most of the time.

    By the way, that brown thing is awful!

  5. You’re missing the point on the colors. Black, brown and white. Microsoft is intending Zune to be a fashion accessory, designed to match your shoes and your handbag. But heaven help you if you get caught with a white Zune after Labor Day. Serious fashion faux pas.

  6. M di L B Simoni:
    Actually, I like the fact that Apple doesn’t try to F@#$ me in the ass every time i turn around like microsoft does. Go back to your peecee boards you effin troll!

    Edgeley Exile 2:
    Come back when your balls drop. douche.

  7. Darkness wrote:
    You’re missing the point on the colors. Black, brown and white. Microsoft is intending Zune to be a fashion accessory, designed to match your shoes and your handbag. But heaven help you if you get caught with a white Zune after Labor Day. Serious fashion faux pas.

    I don’t have a handbag (brown, white or black), and my shoes are black.

    Ok, my shoes may be brown, but that’s only on the bottom where I’ve not look where I’m stepping….

    Damn it! I’ve stepped in a Zune….

  8. “If you put a roomful of Gay men at the task of designing a computer and MP3 player, you KNOW it’d look a lot like a Mac and iPod. C’mon, admit it – you LOVE the effeminate look and feel of Macs.”

    I rather think that they’d have other things on their mind. Designing iPods would be the last thing on their dirty little minds.

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