Microsoft Zune - Product Review


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Since the launch of the Zune prior to the holiday season in 2006, the Zune has claimed the number two position for all hard drive based mp3 players behind the Apple iPod. There are several opinions on whether the Zune can continue to be a player in the digital music player market. This review will discuss the features offered by the Zune and the author's opinion on the Zune's future.

As a previous iPod user I have been extremely pleased with the Zune. Although the Zune software was a bit difficult to install, since overcoming the initial installation issues everything has worked well. The Zune offers three different color options to meet your personal taste, you can choose between brown, black, or white. The large three inch viewing screen is a great feature for watching video or viewing pictures and being able to change the orientation from horizontal to vertical comes in handy.

The 30 GB hard drive provides more than enough storage for music, video and photos. You are able to store up to 7,500 songs, 25,000 pictures, or 100 hours of video. I highly recommend signing up for the Zune Pass music subscription for $14.99 per month which allows unlimited downloads to your Zune player. As a former user of Napster, I never found the subscription to be a valuable feature because it was only offered for products with smaller hard drives, which meant that you had to constantly delete songs in order to add new songs. That is not a problem with the large 30 GB hard drive on the Zune.

Another added feature provided by the Zune is the built in FM-tuner. Although I rarely use this feature, it is nice to have if you want to be able to listen to a local radio station instead of your stored files.

One feature of the Zune that I do not see much value in is the ability to share music with other Zune players wirelessly. Once a song is sent to another Zune, the user can only listen to the track three times within a three day period, then the song expires and is no longer playable unless it is flagged and purchased from the Zune marketplace. I recommend disabling this feature because it decreases battery life.

Overall, I would recommend the Zune to anyone looking to purchase a new mp3 player. Although, the wheel design is not really a click wheel like the famous iPod design, the product is user-friendly and easy to navigate from menu to menu. It has all of the normal features such as shuffle, repeat, and play all so you don't have to keep clicking once a song completes. .

I fully expect the Zune to continue to catch up with the iPod in the hard drive based mp3 player marketplace. According to, Microsoft is planning a new marketing and advertising blitz for the spring and will be offering new colors and a bigger splash with their product features. With the money of Bill Gates behind such a strong product, it only makes sense that the Zune will continue to close the gap with Apple.

Gerald VanHorn writes technology and video game reviews for Along with product reviews, GVHDeals offers specials and discount codes for several related online sure to visit for the latest reviews and product specials and discounts.


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