Ian’s Note: Hann is a web developer and designer I’ve worked with for a few years, who’s spent time both behind, and in front of the counter. In short, he’s a geek with his eye on gadgets, the know-how to get the best stuff on the market, and the patience and persistence to collect information on why something’s worth buying.
Microsoft. We hear that name and we both rejoice and shudder collectively. Windows and XBox are two big terms that come to mind when we think of the worldwide corporation, but do enough of us also think of the Zune? While some people have likened the digital media player to nothing more than an iPod knockoff, when compared to its more popular predecessor, the Zune actually scores just as high in usability and features, and offers a worthy alternative to Apple’s product.
Strangely, this is not true in Canada.
While on the hunt for the Zune last month, I became aware that it suddenly and recently became an elusive product; major retailers like Wal-Mart, FutureShop/Best Buy, and even Amazon.ca were out of stock. Customer service had no answers as to when they would be restocking. Some stores even removed the Zune product displays completely. Microsoft’s official consumer news site makes no mention of this bizarre turn of events. So, what does this mean?
Since I wasn’t getting the information I needed directly from the horse’s mouth, I did some digging underneath the official channels. A thread on the official Zune.net forums made mention of Microsoft pulling Zunes out of Canadian retail outlets, for possible reasons such as non-compliance with the CRTC, failing to bring the Zune marketplace to Canada, and preparing for the release of the Zune HD. People on anythingbutipod’s forum have garnered similar responses.
My question is – why hasn’t Microsoft issued a public statement in regards to this?
It’s too soon to make premature assumptions, given that there are no press releases or news reports pertaining to the Zune’s fate in Canada. However, one cannot help but wonder while Microsoft remains silent.
Do you own a Zune? What are your thoughts on it? Would you buy another one or recommend it as a worthy purchase?