Report: Zune dead, no more models to be made

Tuesday, 15 March 2011 12:09 GMT By Patrick Garratt

Zune is no more, according to this Bloomberg report, who, citing “a person familiar with the decision,” is claiming that Microsoft will now stop releasing new versions of the handheld.

Microsoft’s Zune

First released in late 2006.

Designed to compete with Apple’s iPod.

Made it to a fourth generation, the last being Zune HD, released on September 15, 2009.

Zune software is used for media delivery on PC, Xbox 360 and Windows Phone 7.

Microsoft is reportedly to stop releasing new models of Zune, ending a fantasy that started in 2006 of competing with Apple’s iPod.

The company will now apparently focus on pushing Zune software onto phones and other platforms – such as Xbox 360 and Windows Phone 7.

Microsoft has declined to comment on the story.

“We have nothing to announce about another Zune device — but most recently have introduced Zune HD to Canada via the Zune Originals store and remain committed to supporting our devices in North America,” the company said in an e-mailed statement.

“We are thrilled by the consumer excitement for Zune across many new platforms, including Windows Phone 7 and Xbox 360. Our long-term strategy focuses on the strength of the entire Zune ecosystem across Microsoft platforms.”

Promise, rarely delivery

Zune’s relationship with games has always been one of promise, but rarely delivery. Project Gotham Racing: Ferrari Edition was a glimpse at what could have been, and was shown for Zune HD just after the upgrade released at the end of 2009, but the majority of games for the system were traditional mobile affairs of the Sudoku type.

Zune Marketplace began offering streaming and downloading of movies and TV shows on the Xbox 360 in late 2009.

From November 2010, the music portion of the Zune Marketplace was brought to 360, coinciding with the launch of Kinect.

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