The Zune Is Not A Flop

Let me start off by saying I love Leo Laporte and his podcasts and agree on many of his opinions about things, but I totally disagree with Leo here.

First off the Zune was released with barebones features for a reason, not because Microsoft dosen’t know what to build or implement into the Zune, it’s because they were waiting for responses from the reviewers, and the consumers. Microsoft absolutely knew that the Zune would not take off from the very beginning. Microsoft did sort of an “experiment” with consumers and users, by giving the consumers very little features thus the consumers would respond with what they were expecting. This was a very good tactic on Microsoft’s part, as you can see with this tactic is that the Zune team was not at all trying to compete with the iPod but trying to make a totally different product and implementing different features than the iPod. I bet in 2007 we can expect big firmware updates to the Zune to make it more feature rich and we might even see some features being removed. The Zune has a long way to go before you can even dare call it a failure. For example, everyone was hyped about the Wireless capabilities with the Zune at first but everyone turned out disappointed and pissed that you can only share songs with other Zune users. Do you think Microsoft is going to waste that wireless technology built into the Zune? No, as I said before wait until next year and we will start to see some change. Here is a video by Robert Scoble that previews what Microsoft’s plans for the Zune are.

(Oh By the way I’m no Micrsoft fanboy, if you think so by reading this article you need help, or you sure are a serious hater of Microsoft.)

Related Links:

Zune User Buzz

Zune User Blog

Zune (Official)

  1. David

    I’m shocked!

    “Microsoft did sort of an “experiment” with consumers and users, by giving the consumers very little features thus the consumers would respond with what they were expecting.”

    Now I can’t believe you really mean this.
    Don’t you see you been *****.
    And now you want a large group hug with the ******.

    Not me!
    What a FOOL.

  2. Good point, but what else could it be then? I’m sure Microsoft is not that stupid to release a device with little features and keep it that way–forever. Yes, MS did a sort of “test” to see what kind of feedback everyone wanted. MS was not screwing over 1st gen owners anyway because they can ship many more features through firmware updates and etc. I believe as I said in the post Microsoft now has a clear idea of what people want in the Zune (do to all the rantings on the internet saying that the Zune is a flop). Also, remember the iPod was not great starting out also, not saying that the Zune will ever get there but you never know. As, Robert Scoble asked in the Zune video “This is not a product release just to make noise in the market is it?” Response: “No, we will be in this business for a long time”.

  3. David

    Do you know anything, I mean anything about marketing?

    You can’t sell an item like the Zune based solely on marketing hype. The product must have enough distinct advantages over it’s competitor or it will fail. Those who purchase the Zune, will use it, see the limitations, feel screwed, tell everybody how great it is, sell it, and then buy a iPod.

    Microsoft is a huge company, with very deep pockets, but can’t even produce a Zune with the same features as the iPod.

    Sure the screen is bigger, thats a plus, it has wifi, but the wifi is limited, almost useless, and don’t get me started on the DRM issue or how Universal is now in the picture.

    You stated: “Also, remember the iPod was not great starting out”

    Think about what your saying! When Apple launched the iPod, it was the beginning of the mp3 player revolution, Apple started this all from scratch. It didn’t have a model to look to, they did it all from top to bottom.

    Microsoft has had all of these years to see what every one else has done, what has worked and what hasn’t. They have no excuse for this failure.

    Microsoft is clueless when it comes to marketing, here’s why. They determined that selling a brown colored Zune would be unique, trendy, different. Do you see where it’s listed on Amazon’s best seller list. I could have told them a brown Zune would have been a failure when it was on the drawing board.

    The reason I posted my original comment was the trends I see, Zune owners back peddling on there expectations, saying give it time, it will only get better, etc, etc.

    I for one, chose not to be used as a guinea pig by Microsoft for a job they should have done long before the Zune hit the streets.

    I have over thirty years in the marketing business, and mark my words, the Zune will be dead this time next year.


  4. Siouxperman

    Leo must be upset that he can’t get paid for putting out a Zunecast yet! That was not an impressive review. I have had a Zune for over a month and I can’t believe people aren’t seeing the hype. It is an excellent MP3 player with many more features than an Ipod at this time.

    I always get a kick out of people complaining or saying bad things about the music companies wanting to get paid for all the money they spend producing the music we want for free. Seriously people. I am sick of all the whining. I stopped ripping music from others because I want the artists I like to make so money so they will keep making more music I like.

    I don’t care if Microsoft is paying Universal. I actually think Universal should get paid for the amount of money they are losing from everyone stealing music from everyone else. They are getting screwed. I guess we are as well with the cost of CDs but still, give me a break. We don’t all deserve a free lunch.

    My only problem with these companies is when they control how we use our music once we own it with DRM. Mainly from the standpoint of which devices we are able to use the music on. If I buy music at Itunes or the Zune Marketplace with my hard earned money, I should not be told what device I can use that music on. That part of the RIAA ticks me off which is why I continue to buy CDs that I can use as I please.

  5. David

    I agree, artists should and need to be paid, I’m all for that. However what do you think Universal is going to do with that money? Give it to the artists?. For some reason I think some very, very hot place will freeze over first.

    Take the time, do some research, read between the lines. go to:

    See what other Zune owners are talking about. Many and I mean many have issues and are not happy. Some are willing to just ride it out, but others are upset. Sure some are happy, but this may be there first experience with a mp3 player. My point is Microsoft is using the public as some larger “Social” experiment.

    Microsoft continues to ****** probe many a consumer, My Friend, you just don’t feel it any more!


  6. Amanda

    Opinions are like a** holes, everybody’s got one.

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