We've known for a long time that Microsoft never intends on making a “Zune Phone”. We've also long known that Microsoft doesn't intend on making any phone themselves. Instead, we've we told you that the music features of the Zune would make their way onto Windows Mobile. J Allard said it back in November. In April we started tracking some mysterious new “Pink and Purple” projects coming out of Microsoft's “eLive” team (Go ahead and add “Rouge” to the red-tinted projects related to Windows Mobile, by the way).

So now the news that Steve Ballmer himself has weighed in [via Engadget] and reiterated that Zune functionality will come to Windows Mobile is, um, no surprise.

Now, we built the Zune hardware with the Zune software - and what you’ll see more and more over time is that the Zune software will also be ported to and be more important not just with the hardware but on the PC, on Windows Mobile devices, etc.

We'd argue that it's about time that Microsoft paid attention to making Windows Media Player suck less, but we really don't want to go beating that dead horse again right now. It turns out that if you leave a dead horse lying around for as long as Windows Media Player on Windows Mobile has needed work, it gets a little rank. Instead we just ignore WMP altogether and until these Pink/Purple/Rouge/Zune features hit, recommend you do the same. Here's how: check out our Media Player roundup and install something better.

Thanks to Leo for the Tip!