Microsoft changes tune; Zune update to be 'soon'

Firmware update was scheduled for release March 20

Zune users who were waiting for a important firmware update from Microsoft Corp. learned yesterday that the company didn't deliver on schedule.

Microsoft had said it would release an update on March 20 that would correct a problem that caused songs purchased on the Zune Marketplace to skip when users would first play them, according to the Bink.nu blog. Users also also reported having problems synchronizing their Zunes with their PCs and were expecting the update would correct them.

Cesar Menendez, a member of the Zune marketing team at Microsoft who writes the Zune Insider blog, reported today that the Zune engineering team is still working on the update but does not have a specific date for when it will be released.

"So there you have it, dear blog reader," he wrote, after posting the information he received from Microsoft employees responsible for Zune firmware. The update will be available "soon," Menendez said.

Blog readers who were expecting the update met the news with a host of frustrated responses. They can be viewed on the Zune Insider blog.

Microsoft released Zune and the Zune Marketplace in November 2006 to compete with Apple Inc.'s iPod devices and iTunes online music service. So far, analysts have reported that Zune has not substantially affected iPod market share.

Copyright © 2007 IDG Communications, Inc.

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