Well, this kind of make it official. Here's a review of Microsoft's Zune player, and it's featured on a news outlet with Microsoft in its name: msnbc, and they no likey much.
Lately I've been playing with the fruits of that insomnia: Zune, due for sale on Tuesday. I should say, Zune Version One of many to come. The division that created Zune is the same one that created the Xbox project, another very long-term assault on a dominant competitor. Like the Xbox, Microsoft sees Zune as a Long March, and is ready to spend five or even 10 years evolving the product so that somewhere in the mid-twenty-teens, it becomes your music device. For now, it's enough for Microsoft to make something credible. "Is Zune going to change the landscape this fall?" asks Robbie Bach, president of the entertainment and devices division. "The answer to that is probably not. I think we'll do very well with Zune this fall, but it will be a small percentage of what Apple does with iPod."
If the homeliness of the unit itself isn't a turnoff, the dirty fingernails of the person holding the Zune for the picture accompanying the article pretty much kills whatever vibe the thing's capable of.
Read why you're not likely buying a Zune.