The Microsoft Zune HD is now available in the States, while an update for the Zune PC software has also now been released.

For the first time, both standard and high-def movies can be purchased or rented through the Zune Marketplace online store, while a new streaming music service on Zune.net lets Zune Pass subscribers listen to music from a web browser.

As many readers will know, the Zune HD gets an OLED multi-touch screen, an NvidiaTegra HD processor, gaming functions, a web browser - oh - and music and video playback.

Later this year, the Zune will get applications such as Twitter for Zune and Facebook for Zune, in addition to 3D games.

The Zune HD is available now in a black 16GB version for $219.99 and a platinum 32GB version for $289.99.

Although there's no confirmed plans for a hardware launch in the UK or Europe, Microsoft's Zune video service will be rolled out later this autumn to Xbox LIVE users.