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Zune and Xbox websites announce arrival of Xbox Music

Zune making way for XBox Music

Coming off a big presentation yesterday at E3 2012, Microsoft has updated both the Zune and XBox websites to introduce Xbox Music. Xbox Music will replace Zune as the Microsoft-branded music service. The Zune page comes in the form of a simple FAQ and offers very little information other than the fact that XBox Music will bring new ways to and share across Xbox, Windows and Windows Phone. The FAQ also ensures current Zune Pass subscribers that they will continue to have access to their subscriptions through the new service.

Over on Xbox's site, you will find a snazzy video that offers a quick glimpse of what's to come, a ubiquitous music service that works across platforms. In the video, a woman listening on a tablet, only to plunk down on the couch and bring her playlist up on her Xbox, clearly depicting the newly-touted Xbox Smartglass, announced yesterday at E3. There are also shots of social media features, like seeing what  friends are listening to, and discovering new music through Smart DJ.

All in all, if you have been using Zune, there isn't too much that is new here, with the exception of Xbox Smartglass, but it's a fun little pep rally of sorts.

Source: Microsoft

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Reader comments

Zune and Xbox websites announce arrival of Xbox Music

57 Comments

These are great additions but the one glaring issue with all this new tech is the required internet connections and the data caps associated with each. You're broadband has a cap and your cell phone and or tablet also had a data cap. These entertainment hubs seem best suited for all you can eat unlimited plans, but those are becoming extinct. Add in an entire family using these devices and say hello to the $500 cable/internet/cell phone bill. Something's gotta give.

You can't stream music, video and rich interactive game data all day, every day without consequences. If the XBOX in the cloud is the new cable box, we need deals between the service and content providers that let us eat without getting gutted

For starters, all media services should allow download and disconnect. There should be no need to be in constant contact with the mother ship to stream every playback. Much as this is 2012 and wireless connectivity is larger than ever, that idea is so 20th century.

Unlimited data through T-mobile. I stream all damn day long with no issues. My Xbox is well on the house network and there isn't any cap there. At least not for me in Ca.

With more WiFi hotspots combined with home networks and work networks I don't think that will be a problem.

Not the point. I frequently travel to where wireless (all forms/carriers) is spotty or non-exisitent. Straming doesn't work there.

We still done know a lot of details on how the service will be set up. Based on the FAQ on Zune.net saying the existing Zune pass will continue to work as it has I'm guessing there will be two tiers: a paid version based on the current Zune pass that allows offline play and a free (or possibly free with xbl gold) stream-only version a la Spotify.

It's Microsoft's job to make cool gadgets and services. It's up to us to use those services in a responsibe manner and not use more data than allowed in whatever contracts we have with ISPs (cell and land). It sucks, I know. As consumers we should make sure we use the most lenient ISPs, since money talks. Perhaps one day, when enough people are consuming enough data to hit or exceed their caps we can force some change in the market.

I download most of my Zune Pass music at work or at home via the PC software or WiFi and very occasionally download over 3G. I NEVER stream over 3G because I see no point in doing so. If I download it and after a couple of plays I don't want it, out it goes.

Getting throttled beyond 500MB is a bitch :(

My roommate and I are both pretty heavy Netflix users and have never hit a cap on broadband.

Also, I hope XBox Music is like Zune where it isn't all streaming. I subscribe and download music, not stream it.

So what happens with the great Zune software? Do we get an update that just changes all text that says Zune to Xbox? Or are we getting an all new program? Sad either way, because Zune Software makes iTunes look like the DOS version of music programs.

I take it that what you said is pretty accurate. There will be the re-branding, and Surely a update will happen. But, never fear, MS knows the current Zune software is beautiful, and functional. Most likely we're looking at a evolution of the Zune software, not a revolution. I think we're safe on this one. The name change might be helpful.

Zune software is depreciated with windows 8, more than likely they will just update it on the fly with the new branding with the XML file and that will be the end of it.

I suspect there will be some rebranding of the Zune software for Win7 and XP.  On Win8 there is new music software that now supports the Zune Pass.

I hope they just re-brand Zune and make it more seamless with Metro. As the music app in Win8 has been disappointing to say the least. Zune made me enjoy organizing my collection.

Well it says Zune. When you open the app in the screen which says music, videos, podcasts and radio

Given that Zune has never really caught on, and Xbox is fairly popular, it makes a lot of sense.  Just don't screw the great Zune UI!

Does it make sense that it's called a Windows Phone when it looked nothing like Windows 7 when it launched? These things don't have to make sense, it's just brand identification.

Can't say i preffer the name and branding of Xbox Music over Zune, but I hope it brings cool new features and maintains the now available Zune features

A rose by any other name... As long as the services continue to improve, I don't care what they call it!

The only problem with the Zune service is that once it became obvious the Zune hardware was going away the Zune service needed to be opened up to iOS and Android. Zune Pass did the Spotify streaming music thing before Spotify and could've owned that market. They let it slip through their fingers.

I believe on windows phone and windows it will be labeled as "music" & "video". I can't see them putting Xbox music and Xbox video on there. Even now on the phone is called "music + video"

I just want to have access to my complete catalog of music that I have in my Zune software on my laptop to be downloadable to my XBox and playable from there. Right now on my XBox I can't see most of my content, I have to search for it an album at a time. Too tedious to be bothered with. Hopefully this will change the current fragmented access on the XBox

I really hope they support tiny music players (something similar to Sandisk Sansas, iPod nanos, etc.). The way it is currently, there is way to get your Zune music on to a small portable music player -- a critical aspect for those who need their music while running/exercising outdoors or at the gym.

I know is blasphemous, but I use iTunes to dl music because lets face it, they have a huge collection, plus it's easier to dl (at least for me) and I dl music as an mp3, that was my gf who owns a nano, and o who owns an original 80Gb Zune, can both share the music.

the only other way around it by not purchasing music through iTunes is by just dl any purchased music as an mp3, then add the file to itunes(as an example) and up load it to the device.

There's always a way around things, just have yo be a little creative.

So is my windows ecosystem going to be like Spotify,iTunes movies and videos, ESPN, gaming, and flikr all under one umbrella? I mean even Skype is finding it way in there. Interesting.

Love Zune, the service, and subscription as is. Hopefully that part will not change (10 song credits, etc.) Only question I have is will legacy equipment be supported? It will be a sad day for me to lay to rest my Zune HD 32 gig. Excellent piece of technology that was just never supported correctly.  I'm holding out for the Apollo devices which will make my previous statement a mute topic. Would love to see a Nokia 900 dual core, microsd, 1 gig ram device on Sprint...but sadly it sounds like I'm in store for a Nokia Arrive midtier clone device :(

And still this will not work in Sweden, and probably many other countrys.....its just sad. Do i need to go iPhone to have a descent music service that will allow me to buy media content ? :'(

Since Xbox is all about achievements n bragging points, we hope they create some sort of badge or sweet icon for all the Zune fans that have stuck with it since the start. Something like that would make our new XboxMusic profile a pleasure to see and a great boast for the infinite future!