North Western Winds

Contemplating it all from the great Pacific Northwest

Happy Zune day

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People might wonder why I ditched MS after using Windows and PCs for something like a decade. Here are two examples of the sort of thing I simply have no patience for anymore – both relating to the Zune, which is being released today.

First, there’s the whole “points” thing, which I think is blatant dishonesty and close to theft:

If
$5 = 400 points
then
$1 = 80 points
therefore
100 cents = 80 points
meaning
1 cent = .8 points
or
1 point = 1.25 cents
So, let me explain why this is important. If Microsoft prices a song at 79 “Zune Points” is it cheaper than a 99 cent song from Apple? I don’t know, lets do the math.
79 points * (1.25 cents/1 point) = 98.75 cents (or approximately 99 cents)
So the answer is “no, the MS song isn’t cheaper, it is the same price as Apple’s”. So, that means, to find the actual price of anything on the Zune store you have to multiply it in your head by a ZP (Zune Point) factor of 1.25, and since the general populace isn’t to keen on doing math in their head I can only conclude that this will cause no small bit of confusion. But wait, it gets better.
If you recall $5 is the lowest denomination you can purchase. So if you want to buy one song from the Zune Marketplace you have pay Microsoft $5 up front and let them keep your remaining 321 points (or $4.01, this is beginning to get confusing). Now, the expectation is that you will be back purchasing more songs (and more points) and so you won’t care about your balance. But, what you are in fact doing is giving an interest free loan to Microsoft (because they, of all companies, need the money).

How much is a point worth? “Whatever we say it is.” This is the problem with all point schemes, and it’s why I prefer to buy in legal tender.

It makes you wonder why anyone would bother going through this, just to get that.

Apologies for the lack of posts lately. I have been messing about, learning about digital SLR photography- toying with Adobe’s Lightroom beta and Apple’s free trial of Aperture.

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Written by Curt

November 14, 2006 at 7:10 pm

Posted in Tech

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