The Zune music player was given its death notice late last year. Now it looks like the end is beginning for Zune Music, as Microsoft segues from using the ill-fated Zune brand name to one familiar to a lot more people: Xbox.
On Friday, Microsoft is ending certain Zune Music features as the company prepares to launch Xbox Music sometime this fall.
Among the features being axed, according to Microsoft:
- Social experiences and music sharing: Users will no longer be able to send and receive messages, invite friends, and share songs, playlists and albums they’re currently listening to.
- Mixview playback and channel playlists.
- The app catalog for the Zune player.
- Channel playlists — they will not refresh with updated content
- Availability of music videos for purchase or streaming as part of the Zune Music Pass from Zune PC software.
- Availability of previously purchased music videos for re-downloading or re-licensing (though videos downloaded before Friday will still be playable and transferrable to other devices).
The changes do not affect music streaming as part of Zune Music Pass, music previously purchased, or the ability to stream music vidoes on Xbox 360 with Zune Music Pass.
Microsoft has not set a launch date for Xbox Music, saying in a statement: “We’ll have more to share soon on how Zune customers will become Xbox Music customers and continue to have access to the music they care about, plus a whole lot more.”