Microsoft Launches the Zune.

Microsoft released its Zune music player today, a device that the company hopes will challenge the supremacy of the Apple iPod.

In an effort to ensure wide distribution of the device and to leverage its “It’s the social” marketing campaign featuring heroin-chic actors rockin’ out to the Zune, Microsoft has made a bold distribution choice.

In addition to selling the Wi-Fi-enabled Zune through normal retail channels and online, the Zune will also be sold nationally through pushers of heroin and opium derivatives.

“Hey, I’ve got the real stuff, just $399, it’s smokin’ sweet, and brown, real brown,” said one such salesperson encountered on a street in San Francisco’s Tenderloin District.

He declined to provide his name and when asked basic questions about the Zune’s capacity, battery life, and limitations on music exchange, the dealer said, “I’ll cut you!” and moved on.

Analysts fear that some of the target audience – largely 18 to 45, middle-class, white, unmusical individuals with a body-mass index of 25 and higher – may be uncomfortable purchasing their products in cash on unlit streets littered with broken bottles and reeking of urine.

“Hey, that’s how many people buy their first car,” said Zune Product Manager Scott Erickson. Erickson said that his personal car purchase experience was actually much less comfortable and higher pressure.

Responding to criticism of the decision, Erickson said that Microsoft was simply engaging in creative target marketing, as its market research had concluded that anyone interested in buying a Zune would have to already be high on crack.

Zune purchasers can expect follow-up calls, visits, and attacks from the pusher channel, which will demand additional Zune-related purchases every five to 10 days, including music, accessories, additional players, items that fell off trucks, and actual drugs.

In some instances they may move in to your house and use it as a base of operations.

While Microsoft’s new distribution channel has raised some concerns from analysts, another Zune marketing choice is being hailed as a stroke of genius.

According to reviews, all error messages in the Zune software will feature pictures of “girl next door” types engaged in hot lesbian action.

“Users will actually come to want their Zune to crash,” predicted Erickson.

“Which, admittedly, they shouldn’t have to wait long for.”

The Zune went on sale today and large quantities are still reported to be available in all channels.

37 thoughts on “Microsoft Launches the Zune.”

  1. Today in a retail store I saw a Zune display. The display units were trussed up like Hannibal Lecter to prevent them from escaping.

  2. OMG if Apple had only thought of hot lesbian girl next door action when they invented the Bomb in their error message ther Would Be No Microsoft! Bob rolls up in corner, shivering, prepared to die

  3. While I’ll give them the benefit of the doubt and wait to see it retail, it does look like what K-9 leaves in my yard after an especially large meal.
    …and a big two oh.

  4. 21!

    Zune is teh suck? Never.
    Come on, we all know MS never delivers bad software or hardware!
    Well, that is if you are talking about optical mice.
    Everything else sucks donkey parts. Evil donkey parts.

  5. For the human interest aspect of this story, we turn to recently released reporter Ahnyer Keester:

    I’m here at Martha R. Winnow High School in Palmdale, CA speaking with Amiee (with two e’s) Branson. She recently purchased a Zune from Shaggy G and was required to purchase some crack cocaine as well.

    “Amiee, were you in the market for drugs?”
    “No, but everyone has an iPod and I am a unique individual so I decided to get a Zune.” Aimee points to her ‘I French Kissed Kelly Kapowski’ t-shirt, apparently not getting the joke.
    “So how do you feel about having to purchase an illegal substance in order to get the consumer electronics you’re after?”
    “I’m down with that. I mean, I’m going to fill this sucka with illegally downloaded music and CDs ripped from my friends anyway. What’s a little crack gonna hurt?”
    “You purchased your MP3 player from Shaggy G down on Sierra Highway. Can I assume you drove there in your Prius?”
    “You live on the west side, don’t you?”
    “How many iPods do you currently own?”
    “What? No way! I’m countercultural! Look at my black eyeliner and three piercings on one ear! Man.”
    “And the cocaine, what are you going to do with that?”
    “I gave it to some homeless guy on Birch street.”
    “But I bought a brown Zune!”
    “Yes. We’re all very impressed, princess. Back to John Moltz in CARS headquarters where we’ll continue provide coverage of this important development as things…uh, develop.”

  6. Microsoft sexbots? I shudder to think of the trauma inflicted by a BSoD at the wrong moment: the horror, the mortal terror, the sky-high therapy bills!

    You know you were all thinking it since Carl raised the subject (which is about all that would get raised in this situation).

  7. What is the matter? 24 posts and nobody has mentioned pants or ponies yet. Are CARS readers finally developping a sense of humor?

  8. Zune!?
    Do you pronounce that zoon or zuun-eh?
    Maybe just CRAP? I really don’t know!

    Why is life so hard. First it was apple, then creative, now THIS! Why do I not see the need for this unhealthy competition. As for the target market I guess M$’s main selling point is the fact that iPod is so cliched these days.

    With that over and done with I now welcome the Microsoft SexBox 460 (codename:Zune) with open arms!

  9. Gah. Just added a paragraph I meant to put in last night but the thought of NyQuil and sleep was too seductive.

    I actually happen to have a cold right now, but that’s pretty much my nightly routine anyway.

  10. Ponies! Pantsâ„¢ Ponies! Pantsâ„¢ Ponies! Pantsâ„¢ Ponies! Pantsâ„¢ Ponies! Pantsâ„¢
    Ponies! Pantsâ„¢ Ponies! Pantsâ„¢ Ponies! Pantsâ„¢ Ponies! Pantsâ„¢ Ponies! Pantsâ„¢
    Ponies! Pantsâ„¢ Ponies! Pantsâ„¢ Ponies! Pantsâ„¢ Ponies! Pantsâ„¢ Ponies! Pantsâ„¢
    Ponies! Pantsâ„¢ Ponies! Pantsâ„¢ Ponies! Pantsâ„¢ Ponies! Pantsâ„¢ Ponies! Pantsâ„¢
    Ponies! Pantsâ„¢ Ponies! Pantsâ„¢ Ponies! Pantsâ„¢ Ponies! Pantsâ„¢ Ponies! Pantsâ„¢

  11. Zune is a really cool name. It feels very nineteenth-century-science-fictionalized-late-twentieth-century chic.

    You have to love what they’ve done with it, though. They took a piece of proven unsellable hardware, added an almost unusable operating system and clunky interface, a few big and many small useless features, then announced they were going to take over the world with it.

    Barney Fife, sans the duty bullet, at a mall in Baghdad lookin’ mean. Welcome to the social (Whatever the hell THAT means).

  12. Oh yeah, and near as I can tell it’s easier to get music out of a pile of burning oboes than a new Zune.

  13. We go again to our reporter on the street, Ahnyer Keester:

    Thanks John. I’m at the Best Buy in Cary, North Carolina speaking with Chris Pantolne, a salesman.
    “I a product specialist.”
    “Whatever. You work at Best Buy. How have Zune sales been today?”
    “What sales?”
    “Zune, the new iPod killer from Microsoft.”
    “We don’t carry those.”
    “Uh, sure you do. We’re standing right in front a Zune display.”
    “Nah, that’s just an ad.”
    “For what? Look, I’m holding a display model right here in my hand.”
    “Would you like to purchase an extended warranty for that?”
    “What? You’ll sell me an extended warranty for something you claim you don’t sell?”
    “And an attractive carrying case also.”
    “So how have the Zunes been moving today?”
    “You’ll also need batteries.”
    “Zune. Sales?”
    “Sales of the Zune?”
    “I don’t know. I work in appliances, not consumer electronics.”
    “So you sell washers at Best Buy?”
    “Only the best!”
    “Loser. Is there someone else I can speak to?”
    “I’ll get a manager. Be right back”
    An hour and a half later.
    “Hi I’m Bill, did you need some help?”
    Zornt. Huh? Oh, sorry I fell asleep on your Zune display…”
    “Our what?”
    “Zune display. How have they been selling today?”
    “The Zune.”
    “We don’t sell them.”
    “Are you Chris’s father or something?”
    “Pah! ‘Father’! Ha!”
    “Maybe. Look, we have sold two Zune so far.”
    “Two? As in more than one and less than three, two?”
    “That ‘two’?”
    “Yes, that two.”
    “That isn’t many, is it.”
    “Wait till school gets out, then the kids will come here with their piggy banks and they’ll press their little faces to the glass and point to the one they want. See they’re all at school and they can’t make it here to get their Zune yet. They’ll come.”
    “It is 6PM, what time does school get out?”
    “That’s right, they’ll all come here on their roller skates and their scooters and they’ll bust open those piggy banks and count out their pennies…”
    “I’m gone.”

    This has been Ahnyer Keester reporting for CARS from, apparently Mayberry RFD. Zune sales are less than stellar. Back to John Moltz in a cough syrup induced coma at the CARS headquarters.

    This was a complete waste of time! No one cares about the Zune. I blame Balmer.

  14. I got this zune download that is a blast. i am glad microsoft is catching up. I know they get a lot of flack but i like them

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