Although Microsoft has denied that Zune would expand into communications in a similar manner to the iPhone, the company admitted that it was in an “exploratory phase” regarding supplementing the TV content it already licenses from studios with Zune-only material.
Zune is looking for non-conventional programming that can capitalise on the device’s social networking platform, according to Richard Winn, director of entertainment development at Zune. “What we would be looking to do with any form of original content is the added component that Zune could provide that iTunes or any competing service couldn’t,” Winn said.
Zune lags way behind the iPod in terms of market share for portable media players. Microsoft reported in May 2008 that two million Zunes had been sold since the product’s launch in November 2006, whereas Apple reportedly averages 3.5 million iPod sales per month