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Yep, Zune is in trouble

Microsoft’s iPod competitor, Zune, has been revived with the newly announced Zune HD. But in spite of positive reviews, the overall response from consumers seems to be… well, lukewarm to say the least.

To give you an idea, let’s look at the search volume (via Google Trends) to measure interest for Zune compared to the market-leading iPod over time.

Since launch (the first Zune launched in 2006)

Spikes around the Christmas holiday clearly show when these devices are most in demand, but what the above graph shows above all else is the general lack of success for the Zune, at least in closing the gap to Apple’s iPod monster. Still, Zune HD is a new contender, so this is just a historical overview.

Last 12 months

As you can see, there is a small increase in interest this September when the Zune HD launched, but then it goes back to normal.

What if we look at just the last 30 days? We should see SOME form of activity, people should be flocking to find out more about the new Zune HD, right?

Or perhaps not… Because look here:

Last 30 days

Keep in mind that Microsoft has just had a major media push for Zune HD. And interest is still flatlining. Compare that with the iPod, where interest rises every weekend (many shopping-related searches, perhaps?).

That begs the question, is the Zune HD just a wobbly house of cards waiting to fall down? The Zune.net homepage has a certain foreshadowing of this on its front page:


Above: The Zune HD, a house of cards…? (Image from Microsoft’s own Zune.net website.)

This is all the more sad considering that the Zune HD has actually received some pretty good reviews and seems to be a really good device.

We’ll see what the Christmas shopping season brings, when sales of these kinds of devices tend to boom, but it doesn’t look good for Microsoft’s “revival” of its ailing Zune series.

What is Microsoft doing wrong with Zune?