Zune software update hints at "Zune Phone"

Microsoft enthusiast and blogger Long Zheng has been busy today, Australia day, looking over the latest Zune drivers.

Microsoft kicked off a maintenance period  today, prohibiting customers from renting and purchasing content for up to 24 hours. During the maintenace window Microsoft release a Zune 4.2 software update.

Zheng notes that the Zune driver has been updated and the installer INF now includes the following lines:

[Microsoft.NTx86]
%Zune.DeviceDesc% = ZuneMTPZUSB, USB\MS_COMP_MTPZ
%Zune.DeviceDesc% = ZuneMTPZUSB, USB\VID_045E&PID_0710
%Zune.DeviceDesc% = ZuneMTPZUSB, USB\VID_045E&PID_063E
%Phone.DeviceDesc% = ZuneMTPZUSB, USB\VID_045E&PID_0640
%Phone.DeviceDesc% = ZuneMTPZUSB, USB\VID_045E&PID_0641
%Phone.DeviceDesc% = ZuneMTPZUSB, USB\VID_045E&PID_0642

%ZuneIp.DeviceDesc% = ZuneMTPZIP, umb\urn:microsoft-com:device:mtpz:1

; Localizable strings
Msft = “Microsoft”
Zune.DeviceDesc = “Zune”

Phone.DeviceDesc = “Phone”

In September 2009, photos of two phones named 'Turtle' and 'Pure' leaked and were reportedly part of Microsoft's "Project Pink" to encorporate Zune features into a Phone.

The timining is apt given that Microsoft is widely expected to detail its Windows Mobile 7 plans next month at the World Mobile Congress (WMC) conference in Barcelona. Neowin will be live from WMC so stay tuned for more details.

Image Credit: Long Zheng - istartedsomething

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29 Comments

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Well, Im hoping for an update for my WinMobile 6.5 cause the default audio player sucks. After some hot-fixes... I get a lot of errors. I even get errors when playing videos. I hope they integrate zune touch into WinMobile.

still1 said,
who knows Microsoft can pull windows mobile like what they did with windows 7

Some who've got a sneakpeak of it last year said they liked it but won't share any details, NDA and all that junk. MWC can't come quick enough.

I just wish they would hurry up! My blackberry is screwed, ipod touch has a smashed screen, I can't wait any longer for my next phone

jont said,
I just wish they would hurry up! My blackberry is screwed, ipod touch has a smashed screen, I can't wait any longer for my next phone

People are saying Sept-Nov for WM7 phones, so who knows? I expect we'll get some sort of solid date at MiX in March. We should get a good taste/teaser at MWC next month though.

Seeing how this Zune software updating is going out now, we could be closer than everyone thinks to some new stuff though. That'd be a nice surprise.

Edited by George P, Jan 26 2010, 3:37pm :

jont said,
I just wish they would hurry up! My blackberry is screwed, ipod touch has a smashed screen, I can't wait any longer for my next phone

HTC HD2?

Chrono951 said,
I doubt there will be a dedicated Zune phone devices. More likely a phone that can use the Zune software to sync music.
This is what I also think.

But, a Zune HD w/ phone features...:drool:

Chrono951 said,
I doubt there will be a dedicated Zune phone devices. More likely a phone that can use the Zune software to sync music.

Actually they could do it, it wouldn't be a full smartphone like device, more of something between a dumbphone and a smartphone. It would have the same stuff the ZuneHD has software wise but with a newer browser and the phone stuff.

Not that I see it happening, but it could be done if they wanted to.

martinDTanderson said,
Hopefully they develop an app UI system and release a Zune App dev environment for Visual Studio...

I think/expect all that to be in the upcoming WM7 SDK.

martinDTanderson said,
Hopefully they develop an app UI system and release a Zune App dev environment for Visual Studio...

There are XNA extensions for the Zune HD already: http://forums.xna.com/forums/p/38975/226669.aspx

It's oriented around games but I guess you could write whatever you wanted with it. :)

Leaks are hype. Don't think it matters. They must be coming soon anyway. So these will be 6.5 based with some Zune integration?

WooHoo!!! said,
Leaks are hype. Don't think it matters. They must be coming soon anyway. So these will be 6.5 based with some Zune integration?

I don't know about 6.5.3/6.6 phones but it'll be in WM7 for sure.

da00 said,
..Stupid to leave such proof all visible like that isnt it?

Mac OS X and iPod OS updates pointed to new hardware on more than one occasion as well.

da00 said,
..Stupid to leave such proof all visible like that isnt it?
There might be some handsets in the field with providers for testing. This could be for them so they can test in a real world scenario from any location.

zeke009 said,
There might be some handsets in the field with providers for testing. This could be for them so they can test in a real world scenario from any location.

That's a good point, it would explain why this update is going down now without any info about these phones etc.

It's no real secret that future WM7 phones will support and get the Zune software touch to them. This Zune software update could very well be laying the ground work for future WM7 phones. It does all make sense, just connect it and let it sync your music/videos as if it were a ZuneHD etc.