Zune is looking more and more like a crappy attempt to break into the portable music player market.
I've spent some of the morning reading some details about it on the zuneinsider.com blog. There is an interesting Zune interface demo up there as well.
It didn't take long however to realise that there are some real corkers in the latest information released by MS.
- Everything you try to share is DRM'ed
This is huge in my opinion and one of the main reasons why I won't be buying a Zune. Microsoft is obviously taking this very seriously as you can see from the reponse on the zuneinsider blog.
"I made a song. I own it. How come, when I wirelessly send it to a girl I want to impress, the song has 3 days/3 plays?"This is an absolute joke. Everyone in the know understands that Digital Rights Management is bad for you and me2.
Good question. There currently isn't a way to sniff out what you are sending, so we wrap it all up in DRM. We can’t tell if you are sending a song from a known band or your own home recording so we default to the safety of encoding. And besides, she'll come see you three days later. . .
How does Creative Commons fit into the picture with a device wrapping all your songs in DRM when you try and share your music with someone?
- There is no Podcast support1
Zune will play podcasts. I'm actually listenting to a podcast right now. If you bring the audio file into the software (like a wma or mp3 file), you can play it on your Zune. Beyond that, there will be other options for podcasting support for future releases.I'm sorry, but just because I can import an mp3 file or whatever into my Zune and play it doesn't mean it can play podcasts. Who the hell do they think they're duping? I can't import my existing podcast RSS feeds? I can't syndicate my favourite podcasts? To say Zune will play podcasts is just lame. Zune doesn't support podcasting.
- There is no Mac support
This is the official take on Mac support I guess (off zuneinsider):
ok, back atcha. lots of folks have asked about Mac support: Not right now, but we'll continue to listen to folks and customers and respond to what they tell us they want and need.But not about Mac support eh? Being listened to is great and makes me feel warm and fuzzy inside, but if you're not going to do anything about it what's the point?
- One of them is brown
This just looks like a bar of chocolate with a screen. Fugly!
1 Though podcasters' web sites may also offer direct download or streaming of their content, a podcast is distinguished from other formats by its ability to be downloaded automatically using software capable of reading feeds like RSS or Atom. wikipedia: podcast
2 Why DRM isn't good for you and me: