updated 11:05 am EDT, Wed October 3, 2007
Zune Release and Canada
Although Microsoft's announcement of the new Zunes targeted only November for their US debut, the devices now have an approximate release date, according to a listing by Amazon. The online retailer expects the Zune 80 as well as the flash-based Zune 4 and Zune 8 to be available by November 13th, almost exactly a year after the original launch. Pre-orders are already being accepted at Microsoft's asking prices ranging between $150 and $250. The Zune 30 is already available as it remains unchanged from the initial version aside from an expected software upgrade.
Packaging for the device may nonetheless have revealed Microsoft's first intentions to release the Zune outside of the US, a company-made video (shown below) reveals. In showing the player, the company also revealed accessory packaging with both English and French writing. The languages are not present on older Zune boxing and would only be required in the Canadian province of Quebec, where French is mandatory on all packaging but the market still includes a significant amount of English speakers. Microsoft has only revealed its US plans but had mentioned in the past that the lack of foreign versions was largely tied to licenses for the Zune Marketplace, which it would like to make available for every country where the Zune goes on sale. [via ClicZune]