As I have blogged, I upgraded my 1stGen Zune 30 to a 3rdGen (at least from what I read the 120 is a gen newer) 120GB Zune. Admittedly I still fire up my Zune 30 and despite my torture on it, the device still wants to work. The 120GB is definitely an upgrade, not just in terms of capacity. The display, which yes it is important on an music player since I watch several regular video podcasts, is sharper. The start up and synch times are impressive. Now I will say that I am still getting used to the new navigation mechanism. I wouldn’t consider this a Zune thing since I really hate that laptops are all using these glide pads, I really miss the pencil eraser. I turn off the touch sensitivity on the new navigation pad because much like the gas pedal in my vehicle I do not have the finesse touch. Even with that turned off, navigating through the User Interface is great. The new Zune120 despite the capacity increase is much more comfortable.
I upgraded to the premium headphones. Much like my Zune30 but in much shorter period of time I have already rendered them useless. The headphones that come with the Zune aren’t bad but I like to play the music very loud and isolating or in-ear are just more polite to those around me.
So, I have been really enjoying my Zune120 and even though my “Plays” (the software keeps track of how many songs you have played) have gone down, that is not because I am using the device but rather I am addicted to Podcasts. I was already using the Zune 3.0 software and compared to iTunes I love it.
So where is the “More” you ask? I bought a new Zune8. Working out with the Zune120 just made me nervous. I ordered one of the Zune originals with a cool tattoo-like skull etched on the back. I also ordered the iHome ZN9 alarm clock (which I haven’t really used but already have some reservations about it). The Zune8 is smaller and lighter but there is no loss in terms of functionality.
I like that all I had to do was connect it, let the Zune software recognize it and away we went. First thing was to install the firmware upgrade. Then name it, link it to my gamertag and then pick what I wanted to synch to it. Obviously I can’t synch everything to it since my collection is well over 40GB, but I was able to get my workout playlist and told it to sync it to LittleZune and as expected it synched the playlist and only the songs that are part of the playlist. After two workouts this was a good additional to the arsenal. The only downside is that its so light you almost forget about it.
I do have to point out a bad part of my customer experience. The ZuneStore’s order tracking is weak, and that’s disturbing since its not like your standard internet purchase with the customization so it would be nice to see where your order is at in the fulfillment process.
With all of the rumors about the Zune failing and maybe being discontinued. I sure hope that is just people over-reacting. I love my Zune players and think they are as good as the competition if not better in many respects. If anything does happen, I sure hope the Zune software does not experience a demise. The software is clean and the marketplace is well done.