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Zune Will Go Dark On November 15th–Wait, Zune Still Existed?!

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Yes! Zune is still a thing. But whatever is left of Microsoft’s old music vestige will be getting shut down on November 15th.

Microsoft stopped selling its Zune HD music player hardware years ago, but the brand has lived on in the form of Zune Music Pass, a subscription music service that came with 10 free track downloads per month. You haven’t been able to actually sign up for Zune Music Pass for years, but old subscribers have been grandfathered in.


On November 15th, Zune Music Pass subscribers will be converted over to Microsoft’s newly rebranded Groove Music (which was formerly called Xbox Music.)

That’s a mouthful! What does this mean? The full details on your transition to the future are on an FAQ but basically the possible negative effects are:

  • No more 10 free music downloads for people who still had that service.
  • If you downloaded files with DRM from Zune, they might not work any more if Microsoft can’t preserve the license in the transition.

Microsoft points out, and I agree, that Groove Music is a much better service than what you were getting with Zune Music Pass. Which is not to say that it’s overwhelmingly amazing. It’s a pretty standard online music locker and subscription music service combination. The closest analogue is probably Google Play Music.

So losing Zune Music Pass isn’t the end of the world, unless you’re a sucker for nostalgia. Is that you? Head over the /r/Zune and commiserate in a long thread on the matter.

The top post on that subreddit right now? It’s been fun, but this is it......Goodnight, Zune.