Dr Schestowitz of TechRights wrote an interesting article on the pre-release woes of Microsoft’s latest scheme:

Vista Phone 7 has everything it takes to never take off. It’s a case of too little, too late. Applications and games are not compatible with this platform, which starts almost from zero and has no compelling features, let alone support from principal partners like Samsung

Source: http://techrights.org/2010/09/06/why-vista-phone-7-will-fail/

I quote this as it’s relevant to the next piece of news which has been reported by wmpoweruser.com that a Zune pricing plan for the UK has been leaked.

A handy tipster sent us a screen shot from the Zune desktop software which conveniently reveals the UK pricing for the service, which is expected to launch concurrently with the phones in mid-October.  Prices for the “service” are alleged to start at £8.99 for 10 Song “credits” per month.

Source: http://wmpoweruser.com/zune-pass-uk-pricing-revealed/

I’ll put aside this convenient “leak” for a minute and answer a couple of questions that you may have.  Whats a Zune?  It’s the device which Microsoft released to compete with the iPod, which never really made the grade.  In 2008/9 on Microsoft Watch, users in the comments section were mentioning that the Zune was in bargain buckets at stores over Xmas time.  Zune also operated on a subscription type service, which didn’t capture much imagination either.

For me, the Zune is best remembered for its failure at the turn of 2009, when some models of the Zune didn’t welcome in the new year and crashed (lets hope there were no parties relying on a Zune as a juke box)

There have been rumours (and alleged cancellations) in respect of the Zune – and if it was coming to the UK.  Now it appears it may be, albeit via a service on the Windows Mobile 7 platform and whilst its unlikely that we will ever suffer a “stand-alone” Zune over in the UK, its subscription service is coming your way to suck up some more of your money via proxy (Windows Mobile 7).

So what of this leak?  Excuse me if I’m skeptical.  Very convenient at a time when Mobile 7 is about to hit the market and people are talking about Android and Apple products.

Maybe Microsoft’s all or nothing Mobile gamble (in my opinion) is also all or nothing for the Zune and its “service”?

As one user commented (in respect of the pricing plan):

….grooveshark and spotify have free options for streaming… why would i pay a 10er a month for basically the same thing? yes you get 10 songs to download a month, but alot of the albums I buy online are around £5 and have almost 20 tracks on.

Who knows what the future holds for Microsoft on the desktop, but I think as far as mainstream smart phone platforms are concerned, they lost the battle a long time ago.

And who really cares about Windows Mobile 7 anyway? I don’t see any excitement about it.  Maybe someone can help me here?

Goblin – bytes4free@googlemail.com

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