I don’t know if you’re aware that Microsoft have released a rival to Apple’s iTunes, but they have and they’ve called it Zune. Sounds a bit like ‘tune’ doesn’t it? Funny that. I mean Microsoft don’t rip people off do they? Like releasing Vista with ‘Widgets’… when Apple already had ‘Gadgets’. And Leopard OSX has ‘Spotlight’ and Vista has… ‘Enhance Searching’…. yeah not as snappy or as functional. The point is that they tend to follow, rather than lead with direct innovation – either that or they’re not as quick off the mark. They’re certainly not as successful in the implementation of such innovations.

Why am I bothered? well I am trying to submit my podcast to as many directories as possible to help promote it. Zune purports to be a worthy contender to iTunes – which is the main podcast marketplace – yet it really isn’t. The consensus seems to be that once you’ve submitted your podcast it takes months to get listed and their is a general distinct lack of feedback. With iTunes it took 1 day to get listed!

One similarity that both systems have is that in order to submit a podcast you need to actually download the player software before you can submit your cast via the software interface. This information was freely available via Apple’s iTunes software download page. In order to find this information out about Zune I had to click a kazillion pages within the Zune website, give up in frustration and cursing the designers and architects of the site with a plague of boils, and then search via Google (notice I didn’t use MSN Search… yeah, would you?) to a helpful blog by a random and helpful podcast consultant. So now I am downloading the software that I do not need or want, purely in order to submit a podcast. Am I hopeful that the process will be easy? Do I care anymore?

The Zune site is pretty, but information-free. It’s not intuitive and the FAQs and manuals on the site are also totally unhelpful. it’s such a shame. If you didn’t bundle Microsoft products on most PCs would you have ever achieved the success that you’ve obviously reaped financially????? erm no. General FAIL. Yet again you have reaffirmed why I am a Mac User and will never willingly go back to being a Windows/PC user.