The Zuney Bin

November 16, 2006

Zune's Microsoft launched an mp3 player to compete with the iPod on Tuesday. The internet has chewed it over, and given a big, loud, “it’s okay, I guess.”

People are mocking the fact it doesn’t work with Windows Vista, raging about the its viral DRM, rolling their eyes about software crashes, and just plain scratching their heads that previously purchased “Microsoft PlaysForSure” DRM content, uh, doesn’t play. CNN’s morning show had a nice overview of the Zune. “Why don’t they get some decent design people… it’s clunky.” Zing.

One thing that the Zune has over the iPod, though, is that buying songs from the Zune store is cheaper than from the iTunes Store. Mind you, you can’t buy songs from the Zune Store with money. Instead, each song is 79 “Zune Points”, or $0.9875. Hear that Apple? It’s $0.0025 per song cheaper than the iTunes Music Store - suck on that and smoke it!

Zune vs. iTMS prices.“Wait a minute,” you say. How do I get 79 Zune Points?” “Well,” Microsoft says, “you can get 400 for $5.00.” And you say, “No thanks, to test it I’ll get 79, so I can buy one song.” And Microsoft says, “You can get 400 for $5.00. Welcome to the social.” And then you say, “Wtf, no. I don’t want some odd number of left over points, ass.” And then Microsoft says, “A fatal exception OE has occurred. Please close all applications and restart your computer.”

So most of the time, you’ll have extra points rotting away in Microsoft’s bank. Lets say you buy one song. That’ll be $5. Two songs? $5. 26 songs? $30. So much for 1 dollar = 1 song. Since you can only buy points in chunks of 400 at a time, and spend them 79 at a time, to spend every single point you need to buy 31,600 points (79 x 400) for $395. Hawt.

© Allen Pike. See also Twitter and Steamclock.