Come November, Microsoft is killing off Zune – the very thing that was supposed to kill off the Apple iPod and iTunes. As you may be able to tell, that execution never came about.
Redmond thrust its Zune music players at the world in 2006, and kept plugging away at the hardware and online music marketplace even though no one really wanted it. In 2011, Microsoft killed off the gadget – and now it'll transform the remaining music streaming part of the Zune dream into Groove Music Pass subscriptions (me neither).
In a note on its website today, Microsoft said:
As of November 15, 2015, Zune services will be retired. You will no longer be able to stream or download content to your device from the Zune music service. However, Zune devices will still function as music players and any MP3 content that you own on the Zune device will remain there. You’ll also be able to transfer music to and from your Zune player.
Note Content that was purchased with DRM may not play if the license can’t be renewed.
Existing Zune Music Pass subscriptions will be converted to Groove Music Pass subscriptions.
Groove Pass is like Zune Music Pass but for Windows 10, Xbox, iOS Android, and Sonos, devices and computers, and web browsers, too. There are 40 million tracks in its library that you pay $10 a month or $100 for a year to stream from. Music stored in OneDrive accounts can also be accessed by Groove Pass gadgets.
See the above note for more details on how your account will be shifted over by mid-November – ending ex-Microsoft-CEO Steve Ballmer's expensive battle against Apple iTunes. ®