Microsoft's Zune HD sure has seen a difficult road. No matter how hard
the company tried, they never could gain ground on Apple. The iPod
proven too strong for even Microsoft
's marketing powers, and now it's
rare to hear anything about the player at all. Microsoft is still making
them, but they're hardly marketing it; at this point, the iPod has
simply taken over, and as SanDisk
's CEO pointed out a few years back,
it's hard to "out iPod the iPod."
But that's not to say the Zune HD is dead. United Airlines has just
given the media player a new lease on life thanks to a partnership that
will place Zune HDs into the hands of patrons. Reportedly, United will
host around 500 Zune players on extra-long flights between the U.S. and
Australia and Hong Kong. The deal will provide those Zune players with
pre-loaded content that can't be found anywhere else (think pre-release
movies), but details beyond that have yet to be made public.
Honestly, this sounds like a pretty great deal for United customers. You
don't have to bother bringing your own device to stay occupied
in-flight, and you'll be treated to exclusive material all the while.
Not to mention, having a Zune to hold is far easier on the neck than
leaning over to get the viewing angle correct on one of those seat-back
LCDs. Is the Zune's second wind? Hard to say, but there's no better
place to start than the friendly skies.