Zune HD browser, UI and On Screen Keyboard hands on Videos

Engadget has posted a detailed Zune HD hands-on video, full to the brim with good looking Zune HD features - including the UI, which was previously reported about by Neowin, and the On Screen Keyboard in action. Crunchgear is also featuring a video which shows off the browser UI. Some of the highlights of the videos are found below:

On Screen Keyboard - The typing interface in the video seems very easy to use - the onscreen keyboard allows a lot of space and seems to work just fine with larger fingers too.

Pins, History, and New - From the home screen, a quick tap on the left icons bring you to your Pins and History. There you can view all your pinned items and your recent history. Pinned items can include music, pictures, and videos. Just below your history you'll find the most recently added items making it easy to find your media in one place.

HD Radio - Similar to the original Zune's radio interface but now featuring the HD radio which allows you to listen to radio stations in high quality. Flick left and right to scroll between radio stations.

Music Selection - Scroll through your artists with a quick flick or tap the alphabet header to view all of the alphabet and skip to a certain letter. The interface is still carried over from the old Zunes meaning that you have headers on the top containing different categories, like artists, playlists, etc. You just tap on the next one to go over.

Artist Screen - Shows the artist's albums, songs, pictures (downloaded from the marketplace), bio (downloaded from the marketplace), related (downloaded from the marketplace, similar to Mix View).

Videos - Play in landscape, as expected. Tapping on the screen reveals transparent video controls.

Pictures - Pictures are well laid out with two pictures per column which makes it quick and easy to find the picture you want. Zooming (with multi-touch) and panning is very smooth as is rotating from portrait to landscape. And to set the picture as your background, just tap the picture, and then click "apply as background".

Now Playing - The Zune "now playing" screen is very similar to the slick looking Zune desktop player's "now playing" interface. The background image of the artist is automatically displayed as the background while in the "now playing" screen (pre-loaded from metadata/the Zune marketplace), and tapping on the album brings up the controls. There's a beautiful looking new screensaver which brings up the artist's image, pans and zooms and displays "now playing" information.

Web Browser - This can be found at the end of the second video from Crunchgear below which shows off the new Internet Explorer for Zune. It is based on the version included in Windows Mobile 6.5; multitouch features are incorporated and panning and zooming looks well implemented, finally.

Integrated Bing - Microsoft is all about Bing right now, and as expected, Bing has been integrated into the Zune's firmware - it fits quite nicely, allowing quick, integrated search from Bing.

The only gripe with the current firmware is that usually the home screen button will bring up the home screen very quickly, but when inside the browser, the Zune freezes up, and you must press the button multiple times before the home screen will appear.

Remember that the firmware shown in the videos below is subject to change as the Zune HD has not been released yet and has changed a lot over its lifecycle. That said, it seems too late in the game to change a lot seeing as it's rumored to launch on the 8th September.

Engadget Hands On:

Crunchgear Hands on Video:

Thanks to forum user andrewbares for the news tip!
Images are screens from Engadget hands on video

UPDATE:Pictures of an official display sent to Gizmodo by a best buy employee seem to confirm the street date will be the 15th of September.

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