Microsoft Zune Scores More Content

    May 6, 2008

In an effort to compete with Apple, Microsoft said today that it is adding downloadable television shows from Comedy Central, MTV, NBC, and others to its online Zune store.

The new content also includes programs from Nickelodeon, Turner Broadcasting and VH1, Microsoft said. Titles include "South Park" which is already available for free online, "The Office", "Battlestar Galactica", "Heroes" and "Spongebob SquarePants."

Television shows are priced at 160 "Microsoft points" per episode or $1.99 at launch. The new offerings now include 3.5 million songs, 800 television shows, 4,800 music videos and 3,500 audio and video podcasts.

Microsoft said it has also added updates to the Zune online community allowing users to drag and drop Zune Cards from friends to a Zune device and receive updates on what friends are listening to.

Users will also be able to post their own reviews for artists and albums and earn reputation badges based on how active they are in the Zune community.

Microsoft has also updated the Zune player’s software. New tools let users sync multiple Zunes at once, create an auto playlist that automatically updates itself as new music is added, and a gapless playback feature that erases the brief gap between songs.

In the first quarter of 2008 the iPod continued to dominate the digital music player market with a 71 percent market share while the Zune had just 4 percent according to the NPD Group.