Microsoft attempting to pay iPhone developers to write apps for Zune

“In my brief comments yesterday on the new touchscreen Zune HD that is set to debut September 15, I noted: Clearly, the Zune HD is going to be compared to the iPod Touch. Its biggest shortcoming is that it’s just a media player and web browser; no apps, no games,” John Gruber writes for Daring Fireball.

“Well, it ends up third-party apps are on Microsoft’s agenda for the Zune HD, and they’re attempting to court at least some successful indie iPhone developers to port their apps to the Zune,” Gruber reports.

“After my post, I got an email from the developer of an iPhone Twitter client. He was contacted by Microsoft a few months ago, with an offer to port his app to the Zune in exchange for ‘a bucket of money.’ He turned them down, but assumes, as I do, that Microsoft reached out to the developers of multiple popular iPhone apps,” Gruber reports.

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: When your product name long ago became a euphemism for fecal matter, no amount of money is going to save it. The Zune has always been a “me-too” product. There is no reason for Zune to even exist; it’s just another example of Microsoft’s mismanagement. Zune is a perpetual iPod follower – and at a significant distance, too. There’s never been any good reason to buy a Zune. “Squirt” to whom? If you want a two-year old iPod, just go to eBay or wherever and get a two-year old iPod. As always, Microsoft’s failed Zune will get its annual steamrollering from Apple in just a few weeks.

All that said, we strongly encourage Microsoft to continue with their Zune effort for as long as possible as its very existence continuously reinforces Microsoft’s image as an Apple wannabe who peddles inferior, derivative products to the ignorant.

Of course, we close with our usual toast: May Steve Ballmer remain Microsoft’s CEO for as long as it takes!


  1. I’m excited. All the new Zune apps transfered over using the new PortsForSure™ technology are going to be slick. I saw a PowerPoint slide it looked awesome.

    Do you think iPhone folks well get some cool new Zune apps going the other way? ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”grin” style=”border:0;” />

  2. the zune HD might become a niche product with its 720p video and HDMI to HDTV dock, but it won’t have mass market appeal. porting applications developed on the iPhone SDK to Zune violates the terms of the Apple Developer agreement.

    MIcrosoft is thinking of porting games like C+ written in code warrior for PC to the Mac – but in this case the developer owns 100% of the IP for the game. This is not true of the interface elements and methods employed using the iPhone SDK which includes much “mobile” functionality.

  3. This makes perfect sense; they had to pay people to buy their “cheap crap” as Lauren put it in their first commercial, so why not continue that profit-making strategy and pay developers to port their apps to try and polish their tur…er…Zune?

    Keep up the good work MeTooSoft! You make Apple look better and better with each passing gas… er…. act!

  4. Hey for a bucket of money, it might be worth it no strings attached. Port the app, then leave it. App development usually costs money but if MS is going to pay you a bucket full…seems like a no brainer. What was that about it being against aapl’s sdk agreement?

  5. I will have to say that the new Zunes look a lot nicer than the old versions. I guess for all those that just hate all products Apple, this will provide some nice and cheaper relief.

  6. If M$ thinks the Zune has a chance against TODAYS ipod touch, wait until the first week of Sept. I`ll take a camera over a radio any day, Hey M$ cameras and radio tuners have been offered on cell phones for years, customers seam to prefer cameras, by a large margin. One month from now the Zune will end up looking like the freshly extruded turd that it really is.

  7. This doesn’t ring true. If MS offered me a bucket of money to write an app for the Zune, what the hell ? I can’t think of a single reason not to do it. Money from MS is as good as money from anyone else, and lack of one stupid Twitter client won’t hurt the Zune one way or another.

  8. @theloniousMac

    Doesn’t ring true to me too. Why turn down a load of cash? The only reason I can think of is if it came with strings attached, maybe to stop developing for iPhone? Wouldn’t put it past MS for demanding that.

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