Great news for Microsoft: Zunes stolen!

Great news for Microsoft: Zunes stolen!

Summary: Providing yet another sign that Apple's iPod is the audio and video platform, a policy think-tank on Tuesday said that thefts of the media player have skewed crime statistics. Microsoft wishes it had that publicity.


Great news for Microsoft: Zunes stolen!Providing yet another sign that Apple's iPod is the audio and video platform, a policy think-tank on Tuesday said that thefts of the media player have skewed crime statistics. Microsoft wishes it had that publicity.

But some forward-thinking thieves are bucking the trend and stealing Zunes. Well, kind of.

This "iCrime Wave" thesis was floated by the Urban Institute, a Washington think tank at a panel discussion on Tuesday. According to the researchers, so many iPods have been stolen that crime statistics have risen.

The iPod's several-hundred-dollar expense and pop-culture buzz made potential thieves, especially young ones, crave the device for themselves or for a lucrative resale market. Suitable victims: People listening through the iconic white earphones are easy to pick out and often unaware of their surroundings. Easy to get away with: iPods lack a mechanism that would pinpoint a thief's location or a subscription that could be canceled by the rightful owner.

The iCrime wave is a semimonthly topic of New York papers — whenever I visit there, the papers seem to be filled with stories about it. In such a large metropolitan area, it appears that people have iPods picked out of their pockets every day.

However, through the miracle of search engine technology, I was able to find some evidence of Zunes being stolen. But sorry to say for Microsoft, not from actual users.

Miami. Music players stolen:

A police officer working off-duty was dispatched to a glass-break alarm at CD Trader, 5021 Sheridan St., at 3:33 a.m. Feb. 10. He said he found broken glass inside and outside the business, broken display cases and a tire iron on the floor. The burglars stole 10 iPods valued at $1,500 and a Microsoft MP3 Zune player.

Oops. The thieves decided to test the Zune but really were after the 10 iPods.

Santa Fe. Electronics raided:

The unknown burglars triggered an alarm around 2 a.m., which alerted a Santa Fe Place security guard, after they broke down the doors at the store's south entrance, said Deputy Police Chief Benjie Montaño. The electronics department is next to the door, and the thieves smashed a nearby glass display case and took four i-Pods valued at a total of $1,000 and two Zune MP3 players valued at a total of $600, he said.

Oops again. More iPods were stolen.

But this is good news for Microsoft: the trendline is going up! Two Zunes were stolen in New Mexico. Go Team Zune!

Topics: Mobility, Apple, Hardware, Microsoft

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  • What do you think of this?

    Seems like Microsoft are trying to improve Zune.
  • The Zune is pretty cool

    My wife and I each have a Zune 80GB and they are pretty cool. The Zune software is very slick and simple to use and the Zune Pass subcription is a good deal at $15, just about all the music you want. Yes, its DRM'ed, but that's not really a big deal.

    Actually, Zunes are getting kind of trendy in some circles for the same reason that Macs are hot these days, they're differnt. Everyone's got an iPod.
    • Love mine!

      I've got a gen1 30GB and love it, along with the $15 subscription good for 3 PC's and 2 Zune's, I ditched my satellite radio (XM) subscription and listen/watch to what I want when I want.

      The XBox 360 connectivity rocks too! Nothing better than queing up some tunes for background tracks while I'm gunnin' for n00bs in COD4! (Let the bodies hit the floor).

      I don't WANT an iPod - over hyped, over-priced and under capable.
      • iTunes the worst

        software in the history of software-kind. Seriously, I simply hate it. And some people (thoe mac-@$$-kissers) acctually use itunes as their main media player. hahaha oh man you guyz seriously have issues..
  • Well that's a start....

    However, it's a year and a half since it was released and I have yet to see anybody actually using one. I commute on a train to and from New York everyday and I see hundreds of ipods, but nary a Zune. I know people have bought them but where are they? Is it a west-coas' thang?
  • Is this supposed to be 'noteworthy' reporting???

    D T Schmitz
    • no it this article simply shows the

      bias-nes of the author towards microsoft. Clearly it is evident from the authors writing style that even the slightest bit of news, regardless if it has any bearing what so ever, against microsoft needs to be shown.

      I think ZDNet gives away free macs to its employees who can bash microsoft the most.
  • RE: Great news for Microsoft: Zunes stolen!

    [i]But this is good news for Microsoft: the trendline is going up! Two Zunes were stolen in New Mexico. Go Team Zune![/i]

    Well, at least you don't hide your contempt for MS.

    I would note that according to those two stories, your chances of being the victim of a crime are almost 5x higher if you own an iPod than if you own a Zune. ;)
    • He IS a victim of crime

      Apple overpricing of the iPod [i]is[/i] a crime! ;)
      John Zern
  • Now I want one

    After reading this article, now I want a Zune.

    I hear they are pretty cool...never seen one, unlike the overwhelming number of iPod's I've seen.

    Any one care to share their experience with their Zune?
    • Info on Zune

      My son has a 30gig gen 1. It syncs great, can share across the network and 360. He has the entire Star Wars collection on there, 1400 songs and tons of space left. Navigation is easy. Behind the iPod, the Zune has the most accessories available for it. Your next most supported device after that is probably several flavors of Sansa from SanDisk. The Zune's sync feature works via USB or wireless, whichever you want. I do wish it had an integrated web browser like the iTouch but when comparing feature for feature AND total price (that's counting storage space as a major factor), I couldn't make myself pay the super-high price of the iAnything versus the Zune.
    • It is actually quite good.

      Background: I'm a gadget nut. I typically have 2-3 things on me at any given time that can

      a) Play Music
      b) Take digital snapshots
      c) Hold my calender to keep me in schedule.

      My Zune 30 was a christmas gift.

      Now with regard to the Zune, it's purely a media player and not much else. But within that realm, it does really well. As with pretty much any other media player it does music, movies and images, and I'd give each of those functions a 'pretty good' rating.

      Of course, the host PC sync software is critical to the experience and I find the Zune software perfectly easy to use with a nothing complicated.

      First the things I like about the Zune.

      1) 3" screen (8.5/10). While not the biggest Media screen out there (4.3"'s are plentiful), at the price point of Zunes, you aren't going to find much that has as much 'behind the screen'. Of course, there are plenty of made in china cheapies, but let's stick to the name brands for now. Screen picture quality is very good. It only washes out in direct sunlight.

      2) Uncomplicated menu(7.5/10). The menu system is straightforward and unconvoluted. The Zune is also snappy and responsive, unlike some cheap nonames out there.

      3) Sound quality(8/10). The sound quality is pretty good, but then that's a totally subjective thing.

      4) Video out(7/10). Just get a 3-out AV cable and plug that into any TV and your Zune can output to TV. Granted, 320x240 isn't going to replave your DVD player or DVR any time soon. I hear the Zune 80 has DVD quality output though, but I'm not sure on that point.

      5) Surprisingly rugged case(8/10). My wife's nice shiny iPod picked up the usual collection of nicks and scuffs fairly quickly even though it was only lightly used. My Zune body, while made of a non-shiny plastic, has withstood accompanying me everywhere for the last 2 months and has nary a scratch to show for it. I'm impressed on that point.

      Now, the things I'm not too happy with:

      1) Video Codec support (5/10). Anything other than a WMV must be converted during the sync process. Way around this is to convert your video beforehand and then sync it. Still, it's unfortunate that MS decided to cut out any additional built in video codec support for at least Divx and/or xvid. Heck, even MPEG-1.

      2) No USB Storage support (2/10). Can't use it (without hacking) as a portable hard drive. This is a real downer for me. I like to keep my personal stuff off my work computer, so I use the portable app suite. If I could run that off the Zune, it would have double the utility of the device for me.

      3) Limited functions on the menu (5/10). While I appreciate the simplicity of the menus, I'd like to have seen a few more things available to the user. I think that functions such as the ability to edit a playlist, delete files locally (without having to do it through the sync software) should be part of any media player.

      4) No graphic equalizer (5/10). While it does have some equalizer profiles, any serious music player should have a full equalizer. Heck my 4yr old flash based MP3 player has one.

      5) Radio Reception (6/10). Great that it has an FM radio, but the quality of reception for me is pretty poor. Even the radio on my 4yr old MP3 player is leagues ahead in terms of being able to pull in and discriminate radio stations.

      Oh, I don't really use the wi-fi sync much as I plug it in overnight every couple of days to charge up anyways.

      Well, there's my take on the Zune in a nutshell.

      • *sniffle*

        • And this is why apple will continue to make money

          This is an actual IM conversation I had about the Zen.

          R says:
          what is this link that you sent me
          R says:
          for music?
          T says:
          its a media player
          T says:
          the size of a credit card, does video, music and has a radio
          R says:
          i still don't have an ipod yet

          At this point I gave up. I am still not getting an ipod. (i use my psp mostly and really consider it more a novelty thing)
  • Zune value, Sneaker crime

    I notice that the iPods were valued at $250/each and the Zunes at $300/each. I guess the Zunes were higher capacity or something.

    The Urban Institute's these is stupid though. If it wasn't the iPod, it would be something else that thieves would steal. It was just a year or few ago that the headlines were about people getting shot for sneakers, which can cost as much or more than an iPod.

    The point about subscriptions is stupid too. Who cares if there was a subscription on the Zune or iPod. Reformat and off you go. And what, Apple is supposed to put a GPS in an iPod so the police could find it? Should the jeweler put a GPS locator in a ring or watch too? But as it happens, each iPod has a serial number so it may be possible for Apple or someone else to track.
    • Zune value, Sneaker crime...

      Since the iPod synchs with iTunes, iTunes does pull the serial number of the device. Theoretically Apple could, to a certain extent, help track down a stolen device. The caveat is it is probably more effort than it is worth for a device like this.
  • RE: Great news for Microsoft: Zunes stolen!

    Excellent point!!!

    Zune is a crime deterrent!
  • RE: Great news for Microsoft: Zunes stolen!

    Even though I'm a happy iPod owner, I was willing to give the
    Zune a chance, but typical to Microsoft's complete LACK of
    forward thinking, it will not work with a Mac whatsoever whereas
    Apple at least bothered to make the iPod multi-platform.
    • You're almost right

      You're almost right. Apple did make the iPod "multi-platform."

      Well, that is to say that Apple made the iPod compatable with Windows. It still doesn't work on Linux (although there are nice workarounds for that, but not from Apple), and we are all aware of the brilliant coding done for the Win version of QT and iTunes and how absolutely perfect it is in all ways </sarcasm>. Of course, it was gen 2 before it worked on Win in the first place, so apparently that "forward thinking" thing that MS lacks was also astoundingly absent from Apple at first as well.

      It's nice of Apple to make it work on Windows. They don't have to do that. But, neither does MS, and frankly it would be a huge waste of money and time. As if someone who owns a Mac is going to get any DMP other than an iPod. Maybe a couple of people are curious. But let's be realistic.

      For the record, I have neither, so I can't say I have a favorite. I don't carry music around with me, nor do I plan to anytime soon. My bro has had all kinds of iPods and finally got fed up and switched to Zune. A few of his friends had one and they can share songs, which they deem "cool." He likes it really well. I've played with it a bit, and it's pretty slick. Were I in the market, that's were I'd put my money (if for no other reason than to continue to boycott Quicktime). I actually do listen to the radio, so I wouldn't buy anything with no tuner in it.

      Just my .02.
      • plus it's made by Apple...

        Not exactly a long shot you weren't going to tell us you like it.