So are Zune features coming or not?

That's one of the bigger questions when it comes to the future of Windows Mobile. Some of us around here *cough* have made it no secret that the software on the Zune HD would fit just fine on a Windows phone. Will that happen?

Let's start with the above video from CNet [via pocketnow] with Ina Fried and Molly Wood interviewing Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer.

The talk runs the gamut of Windows 7 to netbooks to tablets to mobile.

"It's all about shipping good product," he says, going on to trumpet Windows Mobile 6.5 (which, after all, was why he was there).

There's more of the party line about Windows Mobile 6.5, but then he gets down to brass tacks.

What is Zune HD? Zune HD is a couple things. Number one, Zune HD is a music player with a nice music service. By the way, the same software will be available on Windows Phones and Windows PCs. You have that today on the PC, you'll see that in our phone environment as well.

But, he adds, "It's not our plan to make a phone out of that (Zune HD) hardware."

Then there's ZDNet's Mary Jo Foley, who spoke with Jose Pinero, Director of Communications for Microsoft’s TV, Video and Music Business on Tuesday at Microsoft's Open House in New York City.

“Our next step is mobile phones, but we haven’t talked about a timeline for when that will happen,” he said.

Pinero said Microsoft’s more immediate priorities are to get Zune music and Video services on the Xbox. Microsoft officials said earlier this year that Microsoft plans to make the Zune video marketplace available as part of Xbox Live this fall.

Take that however you want, but if Microsoft does the right thing, we'll see it as a major part of Windows Mobile 7.


Reader comments

So are Zune features coming or not?


Just think of WinMobile 6.5 as Windows 98 ME. It's prettier than 6.1, but ultimately just a BandAid. Enter Windows Mobile 7, er Windows Phones? Anyway, that would be Windows XP, which sort of closed the gap between Mac's operating system and windows (not really though). Much like Windows Mobile 7 may almost be as good as the original iphone OS. Then you've got Vista, which is simply an OS-X knock off (at least interface wise).

It's amazing, the parallel, if you really think about it.

On the music player front, the Zune being cool or not, M$ can never compete with ipod numbers. Windows Mobile vs iPhone, sort of the same deal.

Personally, I am kind of a mac hater, but M$ should know when they're beat and need to steer away from always being second. Pick a new project.

We've been asking this for a couple of years in the Zune community. However, I think we all realize the hardware back two years ago really wasn't up to the task..nor was the os ...or more importantly, the licensing deals to make it happen. Capable hardware is starting to show up in Windows Mobile devices at an affordable price. The OS has evolved and I'm pretty sure Zune won't have any limitations porting to WM7. The biggest issue and reason for delay, is working out the licensing deals and developing the right business model, visibility with Providers/OEMs. How do you get a provider who has their own content store to promote yours and at the same time, not be seen as a "Zune" phone? I'm confident we'll be getting answers to our questions in the next 12 months.

@Steve, Ina switched genders according to CNet bio.

I wonder when the mobile 7 chater will start....

I love the commercial on WMpoweruser.com. I hope to see that spot run on TV's everywhere. MSFT needs to push Windows Phone and Zune HD.

The Ina Fried thing is funny. I've read many of her Mac slanted articles and the picture they show of her at the top of the article, you can't tell anything, she just looks like woman. Whan i heard her talk it took me about 7 minutes to get over it and pay attention to the interview... Looks like BAllmer had a touch of trouble with it as well.

Re transsexuals: For the record, tech blogger Tnk Grl (http://tnkgrl.wordpress.com/) is a male-to-female transsexual as well. There's actually quite a few transsexuals within the tech field. i'm used to Ina Fried from viewing CNET videos and her blog "Beyond Binary", which if you didn't catch it is a not-so-subtle reference to her transition, so i guess the thing that caught my attention more was the fact that she seemed like she was biting her lip at some of Steve's responses.

JohnCz hit on the points i was going to, so no need to parrot that. i will say that i'd be utterly shocked if they launch Windows Phone 7 with Zune service, both for the fact that succesfully creating interest in the WP platform will be tricky enough, and that delay a Zune launch gives them a feather to pull out at a later date. Like the iPhone, it would essentially mean that every Windows Phone 7 or higher device is now a Zune. In addition to offering the service on the Xbox 360, would mean tremendous numbers for the Zune service.

Yea I've seen this before too. Nothing wrong with it either. Two of my real good friends are Transies, one works for the phone company doing cabling climbing the pole, and the other one works for the cable company doing home cable install contract work. They are nice people, look real good, and are generally fun. I've had a lot of fun playing Rock Band until late @ night with both of 'em as well.


Hah I checked out tnkgrl and that's a bit obvious and not the most attractive that I've seen. Check out www.chloeprince.com if you want to see my friend's site. Its SFW and everything, it is just a blog. There was an ABC special a couple of months ago covering her too that you can see me in for like 1 second of the whole 1 hour special :)