Zune HD Pricing Leaks
Gizmodo has unearthed pricing info on the Zune HD and it looks like Microsoft is going for the jugular by pricing the models well below the iPod Touch. This is of course if the pricing sticks, as the info comes from a Best Buy inventory leak. Things could change.
If they don’t we are looking at $220 for the 16GB and $299 for the 32GB Zune HD models. That compares to Apple’s current pricing of $299 and $399 respectively. Although I’m sure we’ll see some adjustment there. Or maybe not.
Anyway, September 8 appears to be the date we’ll know for sure.
08/11/2009 at 10:23 am
Let’s not get too excited yet. Assuming Apple sticks with their usual routine, they’ll soon bump up the storage in the iPod touch without raising prices (yet another reason I’ve been telling people to wait on buying one). That would cut the Zune price advantage to $9. Still a better deal but not the $109 cut we’re looking at now.
08/11/2009 at 2:25 pm
That would take the iPod Touch all the way to 64GB of storage, I’m not sure the flash market can pull that off in a cost-effective manner as of yet. Plus the iPhone is still limited to 32GB. If they do bring out a 64GB model, I wonder if they’ll hold onto the 16GB model for an ultra low pricepoint?
08/11/2009 at 3:59 pm
Tim: Just looking at the pattern. Storage on the iPhone has stayed a step below the iPod touch. After the 16GB iPhone was released, Apple offered a 32GB iPod touch. Now that there’s a 32GB iPhone, a 64GB touch is the next logical step in the progression.
Keep in mind, Apple has a distinct market advantage when it comes to buying flash drives. They pay in cash. They buy in superior volume. They lock up supplies before others can. They lead the pack here.
Honestly, I wouldn’t be surprised if they came out with a 128GB option this year. I wouldn’t count on it, but I definitely see that as the final stage of their iPod classic phase out, though more likely next year or later.
08/11/2009 at 4:54 pm
I think you’re part right, Sumocat… they’ll drop prices and they’ll probably go 64GB, but I wouldn’t hold my breath on the prices being as low as you’re expecting. That would defeat the Apple Tax philosophy… unless of course, we’re wrong and they don’t release a 64GB model at all.
Still, here’s the thing… owning a Zune is always going to be cheaper than owning an iPod of any model. Why? Zune Pass (ZP).
At $15/month for Unlimited Music, you automatically subtract $10 for the 10 songs you get to keep regardless of ZP status. That takes it down to $5/month for Unlimited Music, or $60/year. Of course, as long as you download more than 60 songs, you are not only saving money on the individual song cost, but you’ll have a crap load more songs than you could have gotten on iTunes. The Podcast and Videos libraries are adding content frequently too, so it’s nothing to flinch at.
Now, I know, some people complain about the whole “subscription model” being akin to “renting DRM-infested music”, but spare me the crybaby routine… those of us who hate DRM aren’t going to put up with it… we’ll pay $20-30 one time for a program that strips it out without even flinching, and for the more morally-driven listener like myself, I’ll still strip the DRM, but continue my ZP and buy really good albums in order to support the business and musicians we really like.
In fact, I’m going to go as far as to say $60/year is such a bargain that people are borderline stupid to turn it down. Even if you do the math at the full $15/month, if you download an album per month, you pay for it easily just by downloading a second album.
08/11/2009 at 5:41 pm
GT2L: Actually, I didn’t say they’d drop prices, just not raise them when they bump up storage. ie, keep the $229 price tag on the lowest iPod touch, but bump it from 8GB to 16GB. It’s their typical approach, and from their pricing, I assume Microsoft is anticipating the same.