Liveside is reporting that users in the UK can now buy a Zune Pass subscription from Zune.net, this allows users in the UK to stream some music from zune.net, however it’s not yet possible to stream music to the Zune PC software with a UK based Windows Live ID.
The pricing for the Zune Pass in the UK appears to have been revealed by a new page that states the price of a 1 month subscription to the service is £8.99 and a 3 month subscription priced at £26.97. The cost of the Zune Pass in the UK looks set to be around the price of a new album. Zune Pass is a subscription service that allows users to temporarily download an unlimited number of songs for the length of the Zune Pass subscription, as well as permanently keep up to 10 tracks per month.
It is not yet possible to stream music from a Zune Pass subscription into the Zune software officially in the UK. If a user’s PC is set to the UK locale then there is no option to sign into the Zune service. Without this ability, it is impossible to stream music from Zune. However, it is possible to listen to some music on Zune.net; from testing of Zune.net with the new subscription, it has been found that some music cannot play, this might be due to differing licensing agreements in the UK compared to those in the US.
There appears to be no change to Zune.net in the UK which still only has information about Zune on the Xbox 360, but this new ability to purchase and partially use the Zune Pass suggests that there is a lot of work going on behind the scenes. Microsoft has announced that the Zune service will be accompanying Windows Phone 7 at the launch of the mobile devices but the company hasn’t confirmed if Zune Pass will be available or when the service will be available. With the rumoured October launch time of Windows Phone 7 still some time away it would appear that the Zune service will be going international before the mobile OS is released.
Zune going international has been eagerly anticipated by many people living outside of the US and this appears to be a major step forward in allowing those people access to the service and the Zune Pass.
If you wish to try Zune.net in your locale, the page to navigate to is https://live.zune.net/en-gb/account/buySubscription, you may want to change “en-gb” to something else to test it out where you live.