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mr_rmg
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I was thinking more in terms of using a Zune with Linux or Mac OS X - being trapped into using a single piece of software, especially available on a single platform, is very bad thing, and you shouldn't have to rely on people creating iffy implementations by reverse engineering the protocol. I've been burnt with both Sonicstage and iTunes and it's not happening again.

I see. For what it's worth, organising your music with only folder structures using a drag and drop player is an enormous pain in the ass if you have more music than storage space on your music player. Most people would want to avoid that unless they really need interoperability between OSes. There are plenty of players that service that need already, but they'll never get the benefits of integration with a media platform like this.

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I see. For what it's worth, organising your music with only folder structures using a drag and drop player is an enormous pain in the ass if you have more music than storage space on your music player. Most people would want to avoid that unless they really need interoperability between OSes. There are plenty of players that service that need already, but they'll never get the benefits of integration with a media platform like this.

Management software and drag/drop isn't mutually exclusive - for example, there's nothing stopping the manufacturers to provide a 'drop' directory for files, where the ID3 tags can be read by the player, added to the library, and then moved (or, even better, system linked) automatically, and providing a way to refresh the internal database when you delete. They could also quite easily provide some sort of open specification to provide easy interoperability rather than forcing you to use their software.

Whatsmore, in my experience software like Sonicstage and iTunes can be incredibly unstable and flaky with 30,000+ songs, so you end up having to transfer them by hand anyway, only now you've got to do it through some crappy unstable bloated software instead of doing it the simple drag/drop way.

I've had so many problems with issues around iTunes that I generally don't use my iPod anymore. I'm happy for them to provide software, I just don't want them to make it necessary for me to use it.

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Microsoft > Apple when it comes to games development so I'm sure we'll start to see some decent games come out on this. Better than the overwhelming rubbish that the AppStore games content is anyway. Quality over quantity.

You'll probably also start seeing Microsoft first parties exploiting some of their IP on the device as well which should be interesting.

Jury's out until E3.

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I really hope Microsoft have more than this to pimp at e3.

Hardware wise- aside from the motion camera as a possibility this will be it I think.

They haven't announced any new games or anything in nearly over a year so it's genuinely hard to predict what will end up going on as the conference. Looks like they've held everything back xbox wise.

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Microsoft > Apple when it comes to games development so I'm sure we'll start to see some decent games come out on this. Better than the overwhelming rubbish that the AppStore games content is anyway. Quality over quantity.

You'll probably also start seeing Microsoft first parties exploiting some of their IP on the device as well which should be interesting.

Jury's out until E3.

Suppose that's not hard to say though with Apple not actually being game developers.

But yea, maybe Microsoft can entice (pay) some of their studios to make some games on it, and also push XNA over towards it as well to let them compete with the iTunes games apps.

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They haven't announced any new games or anything in nearly over a year so it's genuinely hard to predict what will end up going on as the conference. Looks like they've held everything back xbox wise.

It's been quite strange on that front really, in comparison to previous years, they've been very cagey which I can't imagine is to their detriment so you really think they better have some big hitters to announce at E3 or they're really going to start tailling off.

Thing is though, unless they suddenly decide to try and 'do a nintendo' in terms of only announcing soon before releasing, I still think they will have a bit of a lacklustre line up as most stuff on 360 gets mentioned somewhere or another before long.

Alan Wake, BioShock 2, CoD:MW2, Forza 3....um.... nothing particularly 'new'....

I have a horrible feeling it's going to be a lot of 1 vs 100 announcements, the motion cam and some chat about Zune HD perhaps...

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Zune Pass is a horrible model that has failed repeatedly over the last ten years. Why would anyone want to rent music, or DRM-crippled movies to view on a tiny screen, for that matter? It's not like the device itself has anything going for it, unless you hate Apple so much you're prepared to pay over the odds for an ugly slab with flaky as fuck software and a joke browser.

You'd have to be mental to buy a Zune. Mental.

Willei: Just... what? What possible benefit does having to use a proprietary app to access a storage device have? Don't be daft.

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HD radio is what the yanks call DAB radio, I think.

Basically, except its totally incompatible/different format from DAB (well done FCC) and hardly any radio stations broadcast on HD Radio (I believe 1 in my area does).

So if this does support only HD Radio, then it most likely don't work as a DAB radio in the UK.

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Yes, AceyBongos confirmed on twitter "No announcements on bringing the Zune hardware or Zune HD to Europe at present"

So this whole thing is US only. Yawn

Move on nothing to see.

Indeed.

And by the time they do decide to wheel it out here, even less people will care than they currently do. I cant see Microsoft ever closing the gap on Apple on this one.

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The only interesting thing that might come out of its connectivity with the 360 is the rumblings about Sky's involvement in providing their digital TV service to 360 subscribers meaning hopefully we will be able to stream some of their sweet HD programming goodness onto such a device.

Although I personally can't see myself paying for the additional subscriptions and kit needed to do so in addition to the Live sub unless some sort of bundle deal is worked out by MS and Sky to reduce the cost of having to buy both separately as would otherwise be the case.

Also whilst its a bit early to speculate surely any deal worked out is just going to hit Sky's hardware division given the uptake of 360's in the U.K. there's not going to be much benefit in buying into their HD service if there is no conceivable hardware revision, to my mind that they could do that would match what the 360 can do bar the promise of larger allocation of HDD space for the recording of purely digital broadcasts that is.

Dont get too excited its probably just Skyplayer on 360.

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Well, most of them anyway. :wub:

I like how they're saying it's ugly when the only thing that sets it apart from the Apple Touch/iphone is slightly less rounded corners and a small rectangle of aluminium on the bottom. And the guy at the bottom of the first page saying they've copied Apple, there's not much you can do with a design if you want a large touchscreen and tech is rarely anything other than silver/black until the inevitable colour versions. :wub:

Proper nuts.

I do like the way it looks though I have no need for one.

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HD, but with an display which can't display HD.

Okaaayyyyy.

Because of what a form of radio is called in the US-HD radio

It can playback HD video when connected to a proper display too. It uses that new nvidia chipset thing, think it even has a mini HDMI out

It's in the first post too

The HD-compatible output lets Zune HD customers playback supported HD video files from the device through a premium high-definition multimedia interface (HDMI) audiovisual docking station (sold separately) direct to an HD TV in 720p.*

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Willei: Just... what? What possible benefit does having to use a proprietary app to access a storage device have? Don't be daft.

It can offer other good things, like Xbox Live integration, secure purchasing of content with automated delivery, management of your media library. If the alternative treating the device like a dumb storage device and manually organising content, I'll take the standalone app any day. Strictly speaking I'd rather it wasn't proprietary, but it doesn't bother me too much. I just treat that as the price you pay for this added functionality.

And that's the same with iPods and Zunes. I don't see why you could be drastically in favour of one against the other when the two are so similar. I personally have a Zune and am happy with it (though it's first gen and I'm about ready for an upgrade), but I don't have some crazy axe to grind with Apple or the iPod.

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I have no interest in the Zune. It's never officially been released here, has it? I sometimes see them in the window of CeX, but I've never had an inclination to try one out.

But this new Zune tells us some interesting things about the possible next iPhone/touch generation: OLED screens are becoming more common, and Apple may as well squeeze a radio inside (perhaps even DAB, if not basic FM).

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Well, there's two key differences. One is that 10%+ of people run Mac OS X these days, while Microsoft only offer the Zune software for Windows. Secondly, the iPod is in the dominant position, so Microsoft should really be looking for ways to differentiate their product to make it a success and encourage disgruntled iPod owners to switch, and having the exact same flaw as the iPod isn't exactly a strong selling point.

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It can offer other good things, like Xbox Live integration, secure purchasing of content with automated delivery, management of your media library.

So apart from Xbox Live integration (which serves no practical purpose beyond begging the XBL userbase to buy Zunes), a bunch of things that you can already do without software lock-in.

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So apart from Xbox Live integration (which serves no practical purpose beyond begging the XBL userbase to buy Zunes), a bunch of things that you can already do without software lock-in.

Regarding Xbox Live integration, I wish I could see into the future like you!

At the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) next week, attendees will see firsthand how Zune integrates into Xbox LIVE to create a game-changing entertainment experience.

And I was talking about the virtues of a Zune, an iPod, maybe even a Sony device against a basic UMS type player. I can't tell if you're defending the UMS player or if you believe iPods/Sonys/whatevers don't have any kind of lock-in strategy.

But regardless, "You'd have to be mental to buy a Zune" isn't the kind of sentiment one can be persuaded out of. As I said before, Microsoft and Apple's offerings are so similar to me that I can't imagine why you'd totally dismiss one but not the other.

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Regarding Xbox Live integration, I wish I could see into the future like you!

And I was talking about the virtues of a Zune, an iPod, maybe even a Sony device against a basic UMS type player. I can't tell if you're defending the UMS player or if you believe iPods/Sonys/whatevers don't have any kind of lock-in strategy.

But regardless, "You'd have to be mental to buy a Zune" isn't the kind of sentiment one can be persuaded out of. As I said before, Microsoft and Apple's offerings are so similar to me that I can't imagine why you'd totally dismiss one but not the other.

Sorry, but even though I am an Apple freak, the disparity in your last statement is so obvious.

How are the offerings the same? Apple provides support on windows and mac. Zune does not. Apple has a massive amount of support for application development because of that first point. Zune does not. Availability of TV series, films etc on the iPhone/iPod is great, god knows what MS is doing in Europe.

Almost all of my non-tech friends now have an iPhone and are loving it. They wont buy a mac, but they are sold on the Apple story on a handheld media player. MS are so far behind on this, and they know it. The last MS press release almost admitted it.

Zune is the betamax and hd-dvd. How can you compare the offerings?

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And I was talking about the virtues of a Zune, an iPod, maybe even a Sony device against a basic UMS type player. I can't tell if you're defending the UMS player or if you believe iPods/Sonys/whatevers don't have any kind of lock-in strategy.

But regardless, "You'd have to be mental to buy a Zune" isn't the kind of sentiment one can be persuaded out of. As I said before, Microsoft and Apple's offerings are so similar to me that I can't imagine why you'd totally dismiss one but not the other.

To make it clear, the same criticisms re connectivity can be aimed at the iPod, Walkman, etc. I don't currently own an iPod, and would have reservations about getting one if I couldn't work around iTunes as much as possible.

I could be persuaded out of my view of the Zune if there was even a glimmer of evidence that it wasn't the same old recording-industry kowtowing shit that "Windows Media" has always been about. There is still a huge difference in how Microsoft approach and understand consumer electronics compared to Apple, but ultimately I think they've just come to the market too late - they need market share to gain bargaining power with the labels, and need to offer something drastically better than the iPod, plus effective marketing, to gain market share.

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Basically, except its totally incompatible/different format from DAB (well done FCC) and hardly any radio stations broadcast on HD Radio (I believe 1 in my area does).

So if this does support only HD Radio, then it most likely don't work as a DAB radio in the UK.

Yank digital radio is much better than DAB, dab is crap and FM sounds better.

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Yank digital radio is much better than DAB, dab is crap and FM sounds better.

Problem is that apparently in the USA only 1% of the population have any idea what HD radio is, most of which think its satellite radio. I guess the ZuneHD might do something to rectify this, but then again its a fucking Zune, who buys those?

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To make it clear, the same criticisms re connectivity can be aimed at the iPod, Walkman, etc. I don't currently own an iPod, and would have reservations about getting one if I couldn't work around iTunes as much as possible.

I could be persuaded out of my view of the Zune if there was even a glimmer of evidence that it wasn't the same old recording-industry kowtowing shit that "Windows Media" has always been about. There is still a huge difference in how Microsoft approach and understand consumer electronics compared to Apple, but ultimately I think they've just come to the market too late - they need market share to gain bargaining power with the labels, and need to offer something drastically better than the iPod, plus effective marketing, to gain market share.

You see, this is what I don't get. I've been an ipod man since the second generation, but I don't see what the issue is here.

You can rip your cds to itunes and sync them. Any songs you download had DRM, but thats not the case now, but why should that matter? Anyone who is using the music for their own use would not likely have any issue with the DRM. If you don't like the iTunes model, there were other places to buy the music online.

Whats the problem?

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Sure, it was fun to have Ballmer run us through a little demo of the new Zune HD, but we'd be remiss in our duties if we didn't spend some time manhandling the device ourselves. We managed to track down the beast and toy with it a bit, and we must say... the thing kind of rocks. In your hand the Zune HD has a nice, solid feel, with good heft to it and a surprisingly thin profile. The OLED screen looks absolutely stunning -- even at severe viewing angles, colors were super bright, edges were crisp, and text looked beautiful. The UI is an extension of the exisiting Zune interface, but way tricked out in this version, with lots of flipping images, scaling text, smooth scrolling, and an extreme emphasis on simple visual navigation. While the OS isn't finished, we didn't notice a single hiccup while jumping through menus or playing back HD video. We'll definitely have more on this in the near future, but for now, you'll have to manage with this handful of images.

http://www.engadget.com/2009/05/28/zune-hd-hands-on/

zunehd_hands04.jpg

need to know more about 360 integration pls engadget!

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