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Old 11-21-2006, 01:09 AM
Jason Dunn
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Default ZDNET: Is the Press Being Too Harsh on the Microsoft Zune?


"I think this is a decent first effort by Microsoft and am sure that software updates will improve the functionality of the device and Zune software, but there are a few things they could have done at launch to greatly improve the buzz around the device. For starters, they should have sent multiple units to reviewers and then offered two or four packs at Costco and other retail locations so people could actually try out the WiFi radio and pick up a couple Zunes for the family with maybe even a slight bulk discount. Every review and analysis I have read states that the writer wishes they could have tried the Zune-to-Zune sharing, but couldn't find any other Zune users in the area. Microsoft limited the WiFi functionality at this time, but should have at least made sure analysts and enthusiasts could have tested out the experience. I also wish the Zune desktop software would have been launched with at least podcast support integrated right into the software rather than having to rely on iTunes or other 3rd party software to capture podcasts. I am sure a video store will be launched in the next few months, but really wish that would have been available out of the box."

My fellow Mobian Matt "Palmsolo" Miller has published a blog entry covering his experience using the Zune, and overall it's a positive one. Matt has a few things he wishes Microsoft would have done (podcasting support, better WiFi functionality), but overall he's fairly pleased with his purchase. He points out that the media has largely been exceedingly harsh on the Zune, and nails the issue on the head: somehow the hype around the Zune got to such a fever pitch, that expectations for a genuine "iPod Killer" were high. And as we've learned many times with technology, reality rarely meets expectations. Was the Zune a perfect execution by Microsoft? No. Was it a flop? Hardly - it's a first generation product with lots of room to grow, just like the first Xbox, the first Portable Media Center, and even, dare I say it, the first iPod - which was not a smash hit if anyone remembers their history.
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