Sep 09

Zune phases out, then phases in

You won't see the likes of these anymore

You won't see the likes of these anymore

Yesterday came word that the original Zune is being phased out in favor of the touch-screen Zune HD debuting September 15th. I remain one of the few people who, despite my dripping disdain for the product, its ecosystem and the horse it rode in on, think that the name Zune is pretty cool. I will also say this without a bit of exaggeration: since it launched in November 2006, I have met only one solitary soul who actually owns a Zune. (You know who you are, you live in Austin — confess!) Further, I have no conscious memory of ever seeing anyone actually using a Zune. Not exactly scientific research, but you’d think I would have spotted at least one in the wild by now. Reportedly, Zune has managed to win 10% of the market, so this probably says more about the company I keep than Zune’s adoption rate. I’m just sayin’.

But all this sweet sentiment is making me think back to my favorite “Zune moment”: when most of the world’s Zunes stopped working at the last second of 2008. A little Y2K moment all its own. (Pretty surprising that any technology company would ever fall victim to that one again.) Whatever. Good luck, Zune, with the new lineup. Methinks you still have a bit of a struggle ahead.

  • Austin Zuner

    As the anti-pod or the sole Zune owner (and the Texan referenced above) I must say that I am pleased to see a touchscreen model coming out and may even go ahead and buy it on the 15th.

    I currently own 2 Zunes (is plural for Zune still Zune?), the 80GB for my media center and the 8gb for travel and have never had a single issue, bug or hiccup. It’s a solid little device with some cool features (and some ridiculous ones too) and the software is actually quite good, even in comparison to iTunes.

    I’m guessing that we Zuners are greater in numbers than many seem to think but we are a subtle, crafty bunch and we are slowly encroaching on all the innocent little Apple-loving iSheep.
    Muahahahaha… I mean Baaaaaa Baaa :-)

    Peace be with you
    The Texan Zuner

  • I’d have to agree with you on the ‘Zune’ sightings. I believe that the image you provided in this entry gives me my first sighting. They are like the Sasquatch of technology, you hear stories and you see pictures, but, do they really exist?

    My theory: everyone who owns them are shamefully concealing them in their deepest pocket, all while enjoying their tunes with the stark-white-signature-apple-earbuds.

  • ken segall

    @Austin Zuner:

    I knew I could coax you out of hiding. And I’m glad that you’re proud of your Zuneness. What kind of cell phone do you use?

  • Austin Zuner


    Coax? HA! I carry my Zune with pride!

    For the record; I have a lovely, company issued Crackberry, and yes, I am secretly and deeply envious of iPhone owners and their apps, but just can’t do it..

    I hope and pray that sometime soon we will be introduced to the ZuPhone.. (are you listening Bill Gates?)

    Vive la différence!!!!

    Austin Zuner

  • Ken, I’m sorry. “Zune” is a stupid name.

  • ken segall


    I suspect that more people agree with you. I must be an easy mark.

  • ken, is it actually possible to ‘drip disdain’?

    just askin’

  • ken segall


    I do it at least twice daily.