Microsoft Sweetens Zune Player Deal: Ten Free Songs per Month
Article by George Norman
On 21 Nov 2008
The wireless, digital players that Microsoft produces are called Zune; if you go and buy such a device, you might want to consider getting a Zune Pass as well. This is a subscription type service that grants you access to a very large library of songs, and as of this week you get to keep ten songs that you like, at no charge whatsoever (apart from the $14.99 monthly subscription you are already paying). The interesting thing is that even if you cancel your Zune Pass, the 10 free songs per month deal will not be canceled.

General Manager of global marketing for Zune at Microsoft, Chris Stephenson comments: “The way people consume music has changed. With the shift to digital from CDs, it is more challenging than ever to offer the right mix of deep content, music discovery and economic value. People want the freedom to listen to whatever they want across millions of songs, combined with the confidence that they can keep their favorite tracks forever.”


Adam Soh, Marketing Director at Zune, says that Microsoft has resorted to this free-of-charge incentive for two reasons. Reason number one is that the economy is suffering lately, and whenever there is a financial crisis people inevitably cut back on some purchases. Reason number two is that with the upcoming winter holidays, Microsoft is trying to boost sales by cutting the prices of several music player models and by offering the free Zune Pass music.

According to Media Research analyst Aram Sinnreich, Microsoft is pretty much fighting an impossible battle. Even though some Zune users will welcome the idea of getting to keep some of their favorite tracks, the measure will not have a significant impact on Zune popularity. The 10 free songs feature would have worked if it was released a few years back; to get a popularity boost nowadays Microsoft would have to “go entirely DRM-free” he says.

Tags: Microsoft, Zune
About the author: George Norman
George is a news editor.
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