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All posts tagged "europe"


Monday, September 20, 2010

Zune Marketplace Expands Elsewhere in the World - Sort Of

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Zune News" @ 05:44 PM

http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/...zuneintlpr.mspx

"REDMOND, Wash. - Sep. 20, 2010 - Microsoft Corp. today announced the further international expansion of Zune, its digital entertainment service. This fall, Zune will expand its music and video footprint and bring the free Zune software, Zune Marketplace online store, Zune Pass music subscription service and enhanced features on Zune.net to new markets, providing a comprehensive entertainment experience on Windows-based PCs, on the go with Windows Phone 7 and in your living room through Xbox LIVE. "The integration between Zune, Windows Phone 7 and Xbox LIVE is an exciting expansion in our entertainment offerings," said Craig Eisler, corporate vice president, Interactive Entertainment Business Group at Microsoft. "Zune enables users to access the entertainment they want, wherever they want it - and now, more people than ever will be able to enjoy the freedom and flexibility that the Zune service offers." "

No surprises here, except perhaps that Microsoft has failed to expand the world-wide reach of the Zune Pass as much as I'd hoped they would. I live in Canada and was hoping - no, expecting - to be able to get a Zune Pass to go along with my upcoming Windows Phone 7 purchase. Here are the highlights:

  • The Zune Pass is coming to the U.K., France, Italy and Spain - consumers in that country will get the full subscription package for £8.99 / €9.99. However - and this is a bit of an issue for some - there are no free 10 tracks per month.
  • Music purchase is available in the U.K., France, Italy, Spain and Germany - this means MP3s from the Zune Marketplace.
  • Video purchases from the Zune Marketplace for the U.K., France, Germany, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.
  • Movie rentals from the Zune Marketplace for the U.K., France, Italy, Spain, Germany, Austria, Belgium, Ireland, Netherlands, Switzerland, Mexico, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.

Is that a confusing mess, or what? As a Canadian, I can buy videos from the Zune Marketplace, and rent them, but I can't buy music? Or can't get a Zune Pass for the Windows Phone 7 device I'm pretty sure Rogers is going to be launching here in the next 90 days? Ridiculous. And why can someone in Ireland rent a movie, but not buy one? The Germans will be able to purchase MP3s from the Zune Marketplace, but they can't get a Zune Pass? And my head will explode if I try to figure out who can do what with Xbox Live - I've been able to rent movies from Xbox Live for months, but I can't rent them or purchase them on my PC.

This not the unified vision I was hoping to see from Microsoft. This is a slapdash, fragmented effort that fails to deliver a solid entertainment experience to everyone in the countries Microsoft is supporting. Yeah, yeah, I know that this is complicated legal stuff, but if Apple can get it done, why can't Microsoft? I'm tired of having to use a loophole to purchase music from Amazon. I'm tired of iTunes being the only source for video purchases I have available. I was hoping Microsoft was going to deliver a solid solution here, and they haven't. It's no wonder Apple is kicking ass and taking names when this is the best their competition can do.

The glimmer of good news in all this is that there's finally a new release of the Zune desktop software; I hope they've added useful features and improved performance, both of which are sorely needed.

What's your take on this? Am I being too hard on Microsoft? Should I be patting them on the back for achieving a tiny fraction of the digital entertainment unity that Apple has been able to create?

The remainder of the press release is after the break. Read more...


Monday, September 7, 2009

LG Looking to Bring Windows Phones to EU

Posted by Jon Westfall in "Pocket PC Hardware" @ 03:30 AM

http://www.lge.com/about/press_rele...ail/21815.jhtml

"Vodafone and LG Electronics today announced the launch of the LG GM750, a new Windows® phone based on Windows Mobile 6.5 available Oct. 6. Fully loaded with fun, easy-to-use features and services that help people take control of their lives thanks to fast Internet browsing, access to personal and work e-mail accounts, and calendar synchronization, the GM750 packs a lot into its sleek, slim form."

In a pair of related statements recently released, handset maker LG has announced plans to produce Windows Phones for the EU market, available in some areas around October 6. Always nice to see more choice, and LG has been around the phone game long enough now that one hopes they will produce a solid product for WM fans.

Tags: hardware, europe, lg

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Samsung's Omnia Just a Week Away

Posted by Darius Wey in "Pocket PC Hardware" @ 12:56 AM

http://press.samsungmobile.com/pres...o?messageId=201

"Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd, a leading mobile phone manufacturer announced the launch of Omnia, Samsung’s all-in-one mobile phone in the Italian market on July 22. Starting from Italy, Omnia will be available through major European mobile operators and in most of GSM supporting open markets during July and August.  Omnia meaning ‘everything’ in Latin and ‘wish’ in Arabic, goes beyond the current top-of-the-line features available in today’s mobile phones. As the first market in Europe, Samsung had pre-order promotion for Italian consumers in cooperation with Media world, the electronics stores in Europe. The consumers who made the reservation for Omnia from July 14 will receive Xbox 360 Arcade gaming systems when  will be available. The price will be at 499 Euro (8GB) without subsidy."

In just under a week, the Omnia will make its long-awaited debut in Italy. Other European markets can expect to see it later this month or next month in two versions - an 8GB and a 16GB; the former will sell for €499 ($793.7 USD) outright. Anyone here planning on picking one up when released?


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