Many assumed the Zune HD would arrive in other countries shortly after its September 15th US launch. But today it was reported by Ars Technica that Zune HD fans won’t be getting any love if they live anywhere outside the US
The news left many international Zune fans frustrated and wondering why Microsoft wouldn’t want to make the much anticipated Zune HD available to as many countries as possible. There are already several conspiracy theories floating around, but we turn to Senior Business Development Manager of Microsoft’s Zune team and ABi Zune forum resident Dave McLauchlan for the answer.
“So why aren’t we shipping in 80 countries worldwide right now even though we’d love to be? Because business hasn’t matured to the point where we can support it,” Dave explained in an ABi forum thread regarding the recent Zune HD news. “It’s as simple as that. There isn’t a simple ‘more countries, more sales, more $$’ equation here. The investment required to enter each individual country is substantial (even by Microsoft standards), not to mention the inventory requirements which require spinning up additional capacity in production lines, etc…“
After plans to axe the entire Zune lineup were revealed, it’s clear Microsoft is seeking a fresh start with the Zune HD. As they did with the original Zune, they’ll want to test the waters of the US market before making the large investment required to branch into other countries.
“[W]e’re not even 3 years old yet as a business and Microsoft had never made MP3 players before” Dave later added. “We, like Apple and others, have had to build a team up, build expertise, and build the relationships to support this business. It’s hard, it’s expensive, and it takes commitment – but it also takes device sales. We’re working on that – hard – and hopefully with an awesome device and great innovations in our ecosystem, we’ll really grow our business this year – BUT, we’re just not yet at a point where we can sustain it.”
Let’s just hope that process doesn’t take 2 years as it did for the original Zune to make it to Canada. Hit the link below to read Dave’s post in its entirety.
[via ABi Zune Forums]