Crikey! The Elusive Zune Spotted

Dennis Faas's picture

Without a doubt, the one tech peripheral that has crossed cultural boundaries is the Apple iPod. But, the most recent rival to the iPod might be the strongest yet. This summer Microsoft announced it would be releasing the "Zune", a machine with gaming and music-playing capabilities with the hardware to trump Apple's wonder-gadget. As of today, images of the Zune are first being (unofficially) released to the public.

On a recent trip to Mexico I noticed that many cab drivers -- those who charged just 5 U.S. dollars for a 15 minute ride -- owned and operated the iPod. It has become the must-have device for techies the world over, and has inevitably created a market where competition is fierce.

Much like its venture into console gaming, Microsoft appears willing to spend big bucks -- millions upon millions, in fact -- in order to establish itself within the digital music market. (Source:

The image of the Zune is black and white, a tactic employed to prevent the photographer from being fired. How? Well, only 150 Zune prototypes have been distributed, and the color scheme makes for an easy trace back to a guilty party.

The picture itself shows the Zune -- a small rectangle with a moderately-sized screen -- wrapped in headphone wires. The headphones themselves are magnetic, making them easier to manage. The control looks much like the iPod rotational layout, but tech insiders Gizmodo assure us that it is instead four buttons.

While that might disappoint fans of Apple's dial setup, it makes for a layout more conducive to the reported gaming functions that the iPod has yet to approach. (Source:

Interested? You can see the photo by checking out Gizmodo here.

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