Zune HD's on the way. Is the party over for iPod Touch?
Microsoft’s Zune HD is on the way towards a success launch this September. It is hep, happening and no less trendy than behemoth Apple’s favorite music child, the iPod Touch. Above all, it is on a head-on combat with the ubiquitous little iPod. So, is the party over for Apple iPod Touch, finally? Well, not really.
Zune HD maybe piping hot from Microsoft’s inventory, but it has arrived two years late compared to the iPod Touch. If rumors are true, Apple’s iPod Touches will have cameras soon. What will be Zune HD’s fate then? Difficult.
However, all this does not rule out Zune’s advantages. Zune HD indeed scores higher in many things than the iPod Touch.
Zune HD’s Advantages
Zune HD is a sleek, portable media player with HD (High-Definition) Radio tuner and organic light-emitting touch screen. It has a version of Microsoft’s Internet Explorer as browser andl features HDMI connection for streaming videos to HDTV, Wi-Fi connectivity and HD video accelerator.
iPod Touch’s Advantages
iPod Touch is no slouch compared to Zune HD. It has a beautiful touch screen, Wi-Fi connectivity, a web browser and above all, direct access to the iTunes store. Though it does not have FM radio with a HD tag to boost it, it does have features that any music player can brag about.
Zune HD vs. iPod Touch
The Zune’s major selling point is its high definition radio. Though you have to bear the pain of ads in between songs, FM radio is never a bad idea in your portable music device. Another compelling feature is the HD’s video-out capability. You can run your HD video in a HDTV and enjoy the luxury of watching things on a bigger and better screen than the small Zune screen. Zune has also something which fits into the social media glove. It has ‘The Social’ – the online music community of Zune users via which you can connect to other users, share your likes and dislikes etc.
If Zune is the upstart new comer, iPod is the grand old sire of the portable music world. The iTunes store is a big plus point for the iPod. Though Zune’s The Social is appealing, it is not an extremely popular (a survey by NPD Group says 87% people who buy digital music in U.S. download tracks from the iTunes store), integrated digital music store like the iTunes. However, the icing on the cake is the Apple App store. There are more than 35,000 applications – ranging from social media apps to productivity and gaming tools – for the iPod Touch. Though Microsoft is coming up with an application store, it is still not as big as the Apple App store. Also, if predictions be true and if new iPods come with cameras, the Zunes maybe in for hard times.
Verdict: Though Zune HD may not become iPod Touch’s nemesis, it will still emerge as its most dangerous competitor. With its pricing unsure, it is still a competitor-in-waiting. But given Zune HD’s Microsoft app store, competitive pricing and unique features, it can surely spoil the party fun of the mighty iPod Touch for sometime.