Microsoft Zune players finally buckle under iPod pressure

The Zune is dead, long live the Zune.

That seems to be the message coming out of Microsoft HQ after the tech giant admitted that no more Zune devices would be manufactured, although the Zune name will live on through its various software platforms.

"We have nothing to announce about another Zune device," a Microsoft spokesman said via email in response to questions after an earlier Bloomberg report stated that the company had ceased Zune device manufacturing.

The Zune range, which never did make it to the UK despite numerous rumours over the last four or so years, ultimately failed in its aims of taking on, and beating, the Apple iPod.

The first Zune model hit US shops on 14 November 2006 and boasted a 30GB capacity, FM radio, and a 3-inch screen. The final model was the Zune HD which went live on 15 September and packed an an OLED capacitative touch screen, HD video out, and HD radio. In total there were seven Zune devices.

The Zune portal is still alive and well though, particularly on Windows Phone 7 devices and the Xbox 360, and it's clear Microsoft has no intentions of retiring the brand just yet.

"Our long-term strategy focuses on the strength of the entire Zune ecosystem across Microsoft platforms, and we remain committed to providing a great music and video experience with the Zune service."

Did you ever make the Zune jump? Let us know what you thought of the PMPs using the comments below.



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