Microsoft’s Zune is expected to get refreshed with the flash-based Zune 2 today. The new Zune will have a much smaller design as well as flash-based storage.
The current Zune player measures 4.4 inches by 2.4 inches and comes with a 30 Gig HD and WiFi. The Zune 2 will be smaller, around 3 inches by 1.25 inches.
The Zune 80 has 80GB of storage and will sell for $250. Zune 8 and Zune 4 are 8 and 4GB flash based models and will sell for $200 and $150 respectively. The WiFi syncs to host computers for moving music, movies, photos and podcasts over the air.Ships in November, date not yet announced.
Microsoft recently dropped the price of the original Zune by $50 in September down to $199.99.
Microsoft will supposedly be manufacturing 2.4 million Zunes this holiday season. The original Zune, launched on November 14 of 2006, sold one million players by the end June, almost eight months after the product made its debut. Apple, which launched its iPod music player in October 2001, has sold 100 million of the music players. So far the company is selling about 1 Zune for every 25 iPods.
Under the new wireless sharing rules, Microsoft said, shared songs would have no expiration date and it would be possible repeatedly to pass along songs sent from one device to another. But a shared file can be played only three times on each Zune.