What do you want to know about the Zune HD?

What do you want to know about the Zune HD?

Summary: My plain silver Zune HD is on the truck for delivery right now and I will spend most of the evening checking it out and posting my first impressions, photos, and video(s). I will be returning this one though as soon as my FC Seattle Sounders Zune Original unit arrives, hopefully early next week, and will post more thoughts then regarding the design and one week of usage of the Zune HD. I have been assembling a list of specific functions, features, and issues I want to check out on the Zune HD to post about here and request that you post any other things you want to see in the Talkback section.

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My plain silver Zune HD is on the truck for delivery right now and I will spend most of the evening checking it out and posting my first impressions, photos, and video(s). I will be returning this one though as soon as my FC Seattle Sounders Zune Original unit arrives, hopefully early next week, and will post more thoughts then regarding the design and one week of usage of the Zune HD. I have been assembling a list of specific functions, features, and issues I want to check out on the Zune HD to post about here and request that you post any other things you want to see in the Talkback section.

Here are my planned topics for my review:

  • Walk around the hardware
  • Software performance and features
  • Viewability of the display in sunlight (it is OLED)
  • How does the web browser compare to the iPhone and IE 6 mobile on the Touch Pro2?
  • Thoughts on the mult-touch capability
  • Are games included and how do they play with the touch interface?
  • Can you get ebooks on the ZuneHD?
  • How is the movie rental/purchase selection and how does it compare to iTunes?
  • What can you do with the WiFi functionality?
  • How well does the HD radio perform and compare to standard FM radio?

Again, please let me know what else you would like me to check out and I will address it in my full review after a week of playing.

UPDATE: Some of my mobile enthusiast friends have their Zune HD units and are started to post their thoughts so I thought I would share some links with you to enjoy until I get my thoughts and reviews up here on ZDNet.

Topics: Hardware, Browser, CXO, Microsoft, Mobility, IT Employment

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Talkback

9 comments
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  • MCE & Zune 4.0

    It would be really great to know if the new Zune software will sync with Windows Media Center. In previous versions, any playlists, album art, etc. would not show up in Windows Media Center. I figured when I ditched my iPod for a Zune that I wouldn't have to maintain two media libraries but sadly that was not the case and I frequently use Media Center Extender over the Xbox to listen to music so this would be a great integration feature for them to have worked on. Thanks.
    bottimj@...
    • Sorry, I don't have a MCE :(

      I'm sorry, but I don't have a Windows Media Center computer in the house and won't be able to test this functionality. If I can find someone else who tests this out I will link to them in my review to try to help you out.
      palmsolo (aka Matthew Miller)
  • MCE Integration

    I'm really looking forward to anything you can report when it comes to how the new 4.x software integrates with anything in Windows Media Center.

    Or any details about what the XBOX 360 integration looks/sounds like.

    Thanks, Matthew!
    GuyAlanDye
  • OLED performance in real world

    I've heard concerns about the performance of OLED
    screens in terms of readability and power
    consumption. That is, because they're not backlit
    viewability can suck when there's any kind of ambient
    light. Presumably this can be compensated for by
    pumping up the brightness but then battery
    consumption likely goes way up.

    So... what I'd like to know is... how well does the
    Zune HD perform as a media viewer when the ambient
    lighting is anything less than ideal (outdoors)? What
    happens to battery consumption under these
    circumstances?

    Thanks
    UGottaBKidding
    • Maybe I should have read all of the blog first.

      I see that concerns about OLED performance in
      sunlight is already on your list... oops. Sorry
      Matthew. My bad.
      However, I'd still like to know how the battery
      performs when viewing media under non-ideal
      conditions. It's not like I'd be viewing the
      entire Lord of the Rings trilogy (Director's
      Cut) in one sitting....but, it would be nice to
      know how it performs in the real world.
      Thanks.
      UGottaBKidding
  • here's one

    Can I sync it with iTunes, like a Palm Pre?
    Monkeypox
  • Here's a few.

    The HD in HD Radio officially doesn?t stand for
    anything anymore, but it was originally for
    ?hybrid digital,? because HD Radio is all about
    replacing or augmenting analog radio with
    digital transmissions. It offers both an all-
    digital option as well as a hybrid digital
    option that enables radio broadcasters to
    augment their existing analog radio broadcasts
    with a digital version, something most opt to
    do so as not to alienate their existing analog
    radio listeners.

    So is it just like regular radio? And do they
    have an app for Sirius XM like the iPhone does?

    and....


    What?s ?new? in the release of the Zune HD is a
    different version of the mobile IE browser,
    based not upon the creaky IE 4 engine from 1997
    (still delivered in today?s Windows Mobile
    devices), but a mobile version of IE 6, which
    dates back to 2001. That leaves the Zune HD?s
    browser nearly a decade behind the modern
    WebKit browsers used in the iPhone, Palm Pre,
    Android, and modern BlackBerry phones.

    Are there compatibility issues from using such
    old browser technology? Can it log into secure
    sites and handle modern security?

    Regarding touch..

    Did they violate Apple's patents and add touch
    gestures like swipe and pinch?

    And.....


    The Zune HD?s OLED screen isn?t high definition
    in the sense of HDTV. The screen itself is only
    480?272, which is significantly less than the
    iPhone/iPod touch at 480?320. Microsoft is
    promoting is the Zune HD?s capacity to output
    720p HD video, (only when using its HDMI dock).

    So if you load the same movie on both an iPod
    Touch and the Zune HD, which one looks better
    on the device and which one looks better going
    out to a TV? How well do they both perform
    going video out to a TV? (I doubt I would ever
    use either out to a TV as I tend to watch my
    Tivo or a DVD). But in case I did, Does the
    Zune HD skip, stutter, etc.???
    i8thecat
    • Touch Screens have been around

      POS business have used them for ages. The first touch screens have been around since DOS..I don't think you can copyright touch feel, swipe or swoosh or we'd all be in trouble for just breathing..
      TKodiak
  • Bluetooth

    I wish it had bluetooth to use with my bluetooth stereo headset, but I'm sure it doesn't.
    razzledazzle