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  #1  
Old 01-12-2010, 03:11 PM
CynicSelect CynicSelect is offline
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Default 2010.. still no international Zune

After coming onto these forums Dave has been very helpful is helping me understand Microsoft's policy and why they did not install a international shipping service for their device, that being said, not having international shipping is simply unacceptable.

Not only are Canadians and Europeans WILLING to pay money for the product, they are willing to forgo the Manufacturer's Warranty as well as taking a loss on some of the key features of the unit itself. Microsoft's response to this market has been with sheer apathy, forcing people to use obscure third party vendor's or buy units either off of eBay, all of these loopholes add at least $30 in unnecessary costs to the consumer, and my question is: Why?

Why is there no international shipping? Why is Microsoft so apathetic to non-US markets? Why do they care that some features won't work in Canada/EU if the consumer is willing to purchase the unit regardless?

Perhaps i am going at this the wrong way and Microsoft would rather me buy an iPod until they get their shit together but after waiting 8 months i'm less than hopeful.
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  #2  
Old 01-12-2010, 03:32 PM
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Completely agree!!
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  #3  
Old 01-12-2010, 05:10 PM
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Yes, it's a bit silly. I think because zune pass is not available and they see this as the key differentiator, they have decided not to launch it in other areas.
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Old 01-12-2010, 05:15 PM
Dr.Strangelove Dr.Strangelove is offline
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I agree too. I'm from germany - consequentially i've got a german Windows XP. For using my Zune HD i've got to connect it to the Zune Software but the newest software version isn't compatible to my XP language pack. For getting my Zune HD up to date i've got run a VM with an english OS. I can understand i am not allowed to load TV seriens... but i can't understand the fact that my OS has to be english; it's hard enough to get a Zune HD here. I'm sorry for my english.
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Old 01-12-2010, 07:06 PM
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Originally Posted by Dr.Strangelove View Post
I agree too. I'm from germany - consequentially i've got a german Windows XP. For using my Zune HD i've got to connect it to the Zune Software but the newest software version isn't compatible to my XP language pack. For getting my Zune HD up to date i've got run a VM with an english OS. I can understand i am not allowed to load TV seriens... but i can't understand the fact that my OS has to be english; it's hard enough to get a Zune HD here. I'm sorry for my english.
Your English is great. Far better than the Zune software's German.
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  #6  
Old 01-13-2010, 01:28 AM
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Your English is great. Far better than the Zune software's German.
Oh snap! Not bad. Actually, the Zune has a small German history which I'll tell you all in detail one day. Nothing secret - just a long story that I'm too tired to type out tonight.

Basically - before we had launched the v1 Zunes in the US, Bill Gates was traveling to Germany to speak at an event at Audi headquarters in Ingolstadt (an hour's drive north of Munich). I was in Munich having just met with Audi, BMW and others and actually at the airport about to fly back to the US when I got a call from my Audi contacts confirming that BillG was going to be swinging through in 9 days time.

Audi's CEO was going to be showing BillG through the range of cars, and they wanted to surprise him by demonstrating the Zune working natively in a souped up S8 at the end of the tour.

Fast forward through the boring bits, but I ended up flying home, working through the weekend with our dev team and Audi's (actually a colleague of mine in the team who was very technical deserves all the kudos here), traveled down to Audi's US labs in CA to build a solution that we could "hack" in for the demo, and then flew right back to Germany to set it up. I blew up several devices in the process, made some life-long friends at Audi and worked day and night, but that next Monday morning I stood with BillG as he sampled the Audi S8 sound system - and then watched his shock as he opened the glove compartment and saw a Zune sitting there driving the sound system. This was over a month before the device was released in the US - and we had it working in a German car.

Definitely one of my career highlights. I remember going back to my hotel immediately afterwards, emailing back to Redmond that all had gone well, passing out for a few hours, and then joining the Audi team for a celebratory dinner. While at dinner, the CEO of Audi called me up and thanked us all for hitting it out of the park.

Moral of the story - I have EVERY motivation to see Zune succeed internationally. Heck, I AM an international person...

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Originally Posted by lip View Post
Yes, it's a bit silly. I think because zune pass is not available and they see this as the key differentiator, they have decided not to launch it in other areas.
LIP
No, that's not it. That has been a factor - but there are other reasons I can't share much detail on right now. Let's just say I'm not done fighting this fight...

Cheers, Dave.
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  #7  
Old 01-13-2010, 01:36 AM
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Hmm, maybe you guys would like to see some pics from that trip? Just dug a few up...


Here's me with my Audi counterpart - Head of Infotainment.


The beautifully mounted, pre-release device.


Check it out - ZUNE displayed on the screen!


L-R is BillG, head engineer of Audi, CEO of Audi, head of infotainment at Audi. I'm just off the side of the pic, standing in BillG's doorframe, leaning in to watch, one hand on the door.

Ahh, some fond Zune memories.

Cheers, Dave.
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Old 01-13-2010, 01:38 AM
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The images are broken, Dave! I would like to see them.
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  #9  
Old 01-13-2010, 01:40 AM
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They work for me - are you sure?

Cheers, Dave.
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Old 01-13-2010, 01:48 AM
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They do now. Very cool stuff, man!
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  #11  
Old 01-13-2010, 01:53 AM
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I can see the pics Dave. So did you get an S8 for your hard work?
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  #12  
Old 01-13-2010, 02:06 AM
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Well, both my wife and I drive Audi's - although not S8's, that's for sure. Let's just say that in the ~9 times I've visited since that meeting, I've had the chance to drive some pretty awesome vehicles - some for extended periods.

Taking a sporty German car south into the Austrian Alps for a weekend doesn't suck, let's just put it that way.

Cheers, Dave.
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  #13  
Old 01-13-2010, 02:44 AM
crazycanuck332 crazycanuck332 is offline
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So......is the Zune HD going to be released internationally such as Canada? Hopefully they release it in 2010 because ill probably lose interest in it
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  #14  
Old 01-13-2010, 03:20 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveMac-MS View Post
... but there are other reasons I can't share much detail on right now. Let's just say I'm not done fighting this fight...
Nice experience with Audi, so.

As you cannot give us details maybe we could find ?

- Translations issues (don't think so...)
- Greenpeace rating (sorry, really bad joke ).
By the way, for their report do they make a difference for the Xbox's & Zunes ?
- Production volume issue
- European Commission (default web browser installed)
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Old 01-13-2010, 06:28 AM
DiNoGames DiNoGames is offline
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Hey, thats a nice story I am german and so I read this with high interest
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  #16  
Old 01-13-2010, 08:40 AM
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Was this released as a real solution for the Audi nav system?

Dave, did you get a chance to tour one of their plants...I work for a German company and we do a ton of business in automotive. The German auto plants are in a different world compared to Japanese and American plants...

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Old 01-13-2010, 09:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CynicSelect View Post
... ... my question is: Why?

Why is there no international shipping? Why is Microsoft so apathetic to non-US markets? Why do they care that some features won't work in Canada/EU if the consumer is willing to purchase the unit regardless? ... ...
Sure it would be nice to see MS succeed with Zune both here and abroad, although I honestly don’t care one way or the other. If I was asked to speculate, this would be my guess.

@Dave, nice photos and an interesting choice of car companies to partner with, I’m not sure if my statement is correct but I’d be willing to bet there aren’t too many current or prospective Audi, BMW and other high end car owners here. Have you considered Honda, Toyota, Ford, GM … … ?

Edit: good point dfkt, removed the LMGTFY
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Old 01-13-2010, 09:11 AM
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I don't think law suits have anything to do with it. And not sure why you made me click LMGTFY in that case... it's not like someone asked a stupid question that deserved an obvious LMGTFY response.

I would guess the record industry mafia has a lot to say about it. The Zune hardware isn't what's mainly sold, it's making money off the Zune store that's the main business, as it looks. All the distribution rights and other legal mumbo-jumbo might need to be coordinated properly to work on a global scale, like the iTunes store. Looks like it's more about the industry than the end user, as always with such business schemes. Thus they're not releasing the Zune globally, since the hardware is just a tiny tip of the iceberg (or, "Zune Experience" if you want to call it by its advertising name) - compared to the money they make with the Zune store.

It's certainly not the only reason, but very likely one of the reasons for the lack of international availability of the Zune.
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  #19  
Old 01-13-2010, 09:42 AM
Klazio Klazio is offline
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Wow so the MS team CAN be fast
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  #20  
Old 01-13-2010, 12:43 PM
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I'll have to see if I can dig up a picture of the reinforced steel briefcase that I had to carry the pre-release devices to Europe in. I felt like that Navy dude who follows the US President carrying the nuclear codes in the "football".

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Originally Posted by DiNoGames View Post
Hey, thats a nice story I am german and so I read this with high interest
Ya, Germany is one of my favorite countries to do business in. I usually spend a week or two each year there, across several trips. Never long enough.

Quote:
Originally Posted by lip View Post
Was this released as a real solution for the Audi nav system?

Dave, did you get a chance to tour one of their plants...I work for a German company and we do a ton of business in automotive. The German auto plants are in a different world compared to Japanese and American plants...
Audi has not released this as a commercial solution at this point. I suspect that the day we launch in Germany, they'll have a commercial solution.

Yes, I've spent some time in their factories. Unbelievable. I think I said to my host at the time - wow, I thought European luxury cars were expensive - but now I see how they're made, I can't believe you can make them so cheaply!

Ironically, German cars are cheaper in the US than in Germany. In some cases, they make almost no profit in order to present a marque brand, while making it up on lower end volume.

Quote:
Originally Posted by WalkGood View Post
@Dave, nice photos and an interesting choice of car companies to partner with, I’m not sure if my statement is correct but I’d be willing to bet there aren’t too many current or prospective Audi, BMW and other high end car owners here. Have you considered Honda, Toyota, Ford, GM … … ?
The "choice" of car companies was nothing more than opportunistic and a request by Audi, since BillG was traveling there to open a conference on 3rd World Heath. His visit actually had nothing to do with Zune nor the automotive industry, but Audi took the opportunity to show him through their products while he was in town. It was also a nice opportuntiy for me as an Audi customer to get to know the team over there really well.

But, since you ask - you'll note that the first car company to broadly support Zune was Ford with their SYNC product. Over a million Ford cars on the road support Zune through that product now. The next was GM with their PDIM product found in an increasing number of models. So we're definitely focussed on volume and mass market vehicles. Honda, Toyota, Hyundai, etc... you name it - I've met with them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dfkt View Post
I would guess the record industry mafia has a lot to say about it. The Zune hardware isn't what's mainly sold, it's making money off the Zune store that's the main business, as it looks. All the distribution rights and other legal mumbo-jumbo might need to be coordinated properly to work on a global scale, like the iTunes store.

<snip>

the hardware is just a tiny tip of the iceberg (or, "Zune Experience" if you want to call it by its advertising name) - compared to the money they make with the Zune store.
It is definitely true that content rights become massively more complicated once you leave a single territory. Also note that we need much more broad rights than iTunes - we have subscription, we have sending content between devices, we have sending content via the social, we have album art appearing in social lists, etc... That said, we were able to secure content rights for our Zune Video Marketplace on Xbox in 18 territories, and we're not stopping there.

The part of your comment that I want to caution on, is the second part - the "hardware is just a tiny tip of the iceberg compared to the Zune store". I'm not going to comment on our business, but Apple is demonstrating that in their case this is absolutely not true. Their hardware business is enormously profitable, their service business dramatically less so. MS to Apple is not a 1:1 comparison, but when you consider the general business model of players in this space, you'd be incorrect to make the assumptions you're making above.

Proof is in the pudding - name me a profitable music service that doesn't have some kind of hardware attach business?

Cheers, Dave.
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