Microsoft to discontinue all Zune models except the HD

ripzune Microsoft to discontinue all Zune models except the HD

With the release of the Zune HD, Microsoft will hopefully finally get a real stand in the MP3 player market with a device made to fit the times. The older Zune models; both first- and second generation hard drive based models and the flash based players never really made that big of a dent in Apple’s market share, and it’s no surprise to see Microsoft now deciding to drop all the older models and go forward with just the HD in it’s lineup.

The information that Microsoft will do this move comes from a Windows blogger who met up with Microsoft to discuss various things. Among secret information he couldn’t share, the one piece of info he didn’t have to keep a lid on was this discontinuation.

Seeing how the market looks today, it’s probably the right move by Microsoft. Hard drive based players are simply not worth producing anymore due to the major drawbacks of the technology (especially in something as portable as an MP3 player) and the fact the vast majority of consumers won’t need as much storage space. Flash memory is also catching up to it in terms of capacities. With the MSRP of the Zune HD being as low as it is (only $30 higher than the MSRP of the 16GB Zune) even the flash based Zunes are becoming pointless since they would have to be ridiculously cheap to be worth it dropping all the goodies in the Zune HD.

No information is available as to when the discontinuation will be official and put in motion, but the Zune HD is only two weeks away so it’s probably not long.

[SuperSite Blog]


SuperDice on September 2, 2009 1:55 PM

How the hell does one living in Canadia, get a hand on the HD. Without treking the border.

easybutton on September 2, 2009 5:17 PM

Internet, duh.

Night Surfer on September 2, 2009 7:21 PM

Bad news in my book. I have a Zune Original 120 and I LIKE having big storage. I wish they would have waited for the flash or SSD to catch up first. Oh well.Out of curiosity….. what are the “major drawbacks” of hard drive players? I have been using hard drive players for years and I have never had a problem.

Postal on September 2, 2009 8:27 PM

Yeah, the zune hardware is really slow but it is slim for an 80-120 gb player. I guess there wont be any good hardrive players around for awhile.The only reason I got the zune was its high capacity. Hard drive players cant be touch screen because the slow hardware and most other players are 16-32 gb.

dragonfly on September 5, 2009 2:12 AM

How to make a dent in Apple’s market share if microsoft sells their Zune ONLY in Americas?!

sir_AnGer on September 6, 2009 11:48 AM

Guess MS should’ve thought about releasing the Zune a few years earlier. That way, it just looks like they copied from the Cupertino guys.Well, they should now rather focus on making the new Midori Kernel fit to be used in an OS rather than taking on new markets.

ultrauber on September 6, 2009 7:32 PM

@Night Surfer – hd drives are more shock sensitive, magnet sensitive, and skip if scratched. Mostly the shock – a jolt can touch the disk to the read head and make a colossal scratch.

paulr on September 8, 2009 12:28 AM

It took me quite a long time to figure out that HD meant high definition video. I was originally just a bit surprised at the anachronism of Microsoft discontinuing all its Zunes except the hard disk model.

Joe on September 11, 2009 10:54 PM

The HD-based players are dinosaurs at this point. Apple is the only that produces any significant number of HD-based players anymore.While I do like the idea of all players being flash-based, I am not fond of all the top-end players going to touch models. How about a classic style model with flash memory? Some of use folks like real buttons…but then I guess we are dinosaurs too!

Mark on September 16, 2009 4:02 PM

I want to buy a 120G Zune, but I can’t find any word on when or whether an HD version will be released. Does anyone have any information on a timeline? I’d hate to order one today and find out an HD version will be released next month. Any info would be appreciated.

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