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Microsoft Zune Upgrade Program planned?

Microsoft Zune Upgrade Program planned?

It's not quite as exciting as a new Zune HD, but if you fancy upgrading your old Zune 30GB or would like to help Microsoft shift some more of their current-gen stock, then the Zune Upgrade Program might be for you.  According to unnamed sources, Microsoft are preparing to launch a discount scheme whereby cuts of up to $70 will be on offer to existing owners looking to switch to a more recent model.

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Microsoft Zune retail displays to get brighter

Microsoft Zune retail displays to get brighter

Microsoft's retail location plans are now public, but it's much more likely you'll come across something like this new Zune retail display at your local electronics emporium.  Designed by Oregon-based Planned Marketing Solutions International (PMSI), the new renders show a far more eye-catching (and less brown) evolution of the current, relatively dreary Zune displays.

More renders after the cut

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Microsoft Zune 3.0 software released: free McDonald’s WiFi

Microsoft Zune 3.0 software released: free McDonald’s WiFi

Microsoft has released the Zune v3.0 software for its PMP, updating all of its media devices with the ability to automatically recognize tracks from the radio and download them via WiFi, view recommendations from Zune music staff, and listen to "channels" and "collections" of regularly updated, themed audio.  Zune owners with a taste for fast food will also get free WiFi access when at more than 9,800 McDonalds outlets, thanks to a deal with network provider Wayport.

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Microsoft Zune 16GB and 120GB confirmed; WiFi downloads supported

Microsoft Zune 16GB and 120GB confirmed; WiFi downloads supported

Microsoft have come clean about their Zune PMP refresh, after details of the blue 8GB flash-based version was accidentally pre-announced on Fry's website.  As expected, both the flash and HDD based Zunes will get more capacity, with a 16GB version of the former and a 120GB version of the latter. 

However significant changes have also been made to the software, with the most interesting being the ability to use the PMP's built-in WiFi to download new tracks.  While the Zune had WiFi before it was added to the iPod range, Apple brought their mobile iTunes download store to users first.

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Microsoft Zune 2.5 update adds TV, new social features & more

Microsoft Zune 2.5 update adds TV, new social features & more

Microsoft have announced an update for their Zune PMP, version 2.5, which introduces new functionality to the device's software and firmware, as well as the Zune Marketplace online media store.  Gapless playback and auto-playlists, together with the ability to synchronize multiple devices simultaneously (and queue up new tracks for loading when the PMP is next plugged in) have all been added to the Zune itself.  Meanwhile, more than 800 television shows - including South Park, Heroes, Battlestar Galactica and SpongeBob SquarePants - have been added to the Zune Marketplace, priced at 160 Microsoft Points per episode (approximately $1.99).

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Humor: Microsoft Zune Phone Mockup, It Could Be Worse

Humor: Microsoft Zune Phone Mockup, It Could Be Worse

No, it couldn’t, who am I kidding. So some people went to the trouble of making an entire video of what they thought the Zune Phone (zPhone?) would look like and some of its features if it were to be made.

Those features include a rotary phone dialing interface, Polaroid camera (the film type, not the camera brand), and a blinking LED digital alarm clock. Oh yeah, and the fully charged battery was dead by the end of the short video.

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