COMMENTARY: Why I love my Zune

With all the hateful and vitriolic commentary going through the ether, I admit that my personal faith in the Zune project was beginning to waver… what, with:

  • PlaysForSure Rights-protected music being incompatible with Zune
  • Weight & size of Zune being slightly bigger than an Apple iPod
  • Look of the Zune being less aethetically pleasing than other media players
  • Missing features like "WiFi Broadcast DJ" that were originally promised

…yep – even this kool aid drinker started falling off the wagon, so to speak. 

Then the reports came in from folks like the guy at the Chicago Sun Times that just hated the device.  And the comments made by some other critics started to filter in screaming, "I can’t migrate my iTunes Music Store music!"  and "It’s a total version 1.0 product!"  I admit started to feel rather sad like we’d failed again.

Then I got one.  My own Zune.

It’s a small package with a rather strange moniker inside:  "Welcome to the Social."  <insert doubtful smirk here>  But then I noticed a few things as I turned it on, installed the Zune software, and even more things as I saw some other people using it.

First of all, during the Zune desktop software installation, it makes mention of a little known fact:  The Xbox 360 can leverage the same music that you have on your Zune.

Secondly, two gals in our office got Zunes.  They spend every other day swapping music files and samples between each other between cubicles… even though they’re down the hall from each other.  They really do love the ability to share their media.

Thirdly, this isn’t a fluke.  I saw two high school girls doing the exact same thing.  They owned Zune players and with the typical human instinct, "pointed" their Zunes at each other every time they transferred a file.  I was going to tell them that they didn’t need to "point" the devices at each other but it was clear they were having way too much fun so I decided not to butt in.

Oh?  You still think it’s a fluke?  Still think the Zune folks didn’t know what they were talking about?   Alright then… I’ll ask you, "What color do you think is going to be the least popular amongst the Zune’s sold:  White, Black, or Brown?"

If you guessed "brown", you’re not just wrong – you’re DEAD WRONG.  Brown is the most popular color we sell.  Now guess what color Zune all the girls I’ve talked about own?  Yep.  That’s right.  Brown. 

Shows you what you know, ‘eh?

I’m secretly one of the most critical people there are when it comes to our products.  I know EXACTLY what’s wrong with a given product… but I also know exactly what I find useful about it as well.  And the Zune?  There’s an overwhelming amount to like about this product.  The WIRELESS SHARING OF MUSIC & VIDEOS really is a big deal. 

This has been a serious re-education in how to form an opinion.  Start with the facts and what you know 1st hand, not 2nd hand opinions & critics commentary.  After all, if it were up to the critics, shows like "American Idol" would have never made it on the air:  TV critics originally panned the show as being banal and lowest common denominator.  For the record, "American Idol" is the #1 TV in the nation getting more than a 32 million viewers per episode and having the largest 18-45 viewership amongst all shows easily topping popular shows like 24, Lost, Desperate Housewives, Grey’s Anatomy, CSI, and Heroes.

So to hell with all you haters.  I’m going to make the world’s biggest, highest quality Windows Media library known to mankind with the best content I can find for Zune… not these lousy podcasts that you see all over the place mind you but GOOD content.

Oh.  And by the way, check this out:

————————————–

Don’t cry for the Zune just yet

Microsoft’s challenger to the iPod takes second place in digital audio player market in first sales week, according to report.

By David Ellis, CNNMoney.com staff writer
November 29 2006: 2:06 PM EST

zune.03.jpg

NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) — Reports of lackluster sales of Microsoft’s Zune that surfaced earlier this week might be a bit premature.

Microsoft’s newest MP3 player, which launched just over two weeks ago, took second place in the portable digital player market in its first four days of sales, according to numbers generated by the market research firm NPD Group.

"Considering it is a new brand, it’s a very good first-week showing," said Ross Rubin, director of industry for NPD Group.

Taken from:  http://money.cnn.com/2006/11/29/technology/personaltech/zune/index.htm?source=yahoo_quote

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