How to Make the Most out of Your Microsoft Zune

The Microsoft Zune offers many features that one might find more appealing than that of the iPod. While still in early stages of development, there are many tips and tricks that can make your friends jealous.


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    Use the big screen to your advantage. Create photo files that consist of simply a blank, white image, or say a red or blue one. Use the white image in dark locations as a flashlight. You can use red much in the same way, but red doesn't ruin your night vision, nor is it as disturbing. Using bright colors can also be beneficial when signaling someone in a big crowd. Regardless, it's a cheap low-tech method that can be used in many cases.
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    Make text pictures. There are quite a few files of text pictures around Zune forums that allow you to send messages to friends using the built in WiFi file sharing capability. Since you can't yet utilize the WiFi for anything but file sharing, it could be nice to send a friend something real quick, like: "How was that song?" or "Are you coming." Hey, its free. If you would prefer not to make your own text pictures, there are free alternatives, such as Zune.Chat.Live.Googlepages.Com, or "ChikaZune".
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    Use Podcasts Podcasts from iTunes, including video podcasts automatically show up in the audio or video section of the Zune syncing software because they do not have a DRM tag. While there is no podcast folder, utilize the 'Right Click' 'Find Album Info' function on a podcast album. Microsoft Meta Services has a lot of popular podcast information. If you can't find your podcast- edit the album info with a logo, etc. that you save on your hard drive. Keep all podcasts in a playlist to separate them from your normal tunes.
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    Download Applications Useful programs can be downloaded to your zune, such as Zune Instant Messenger


  • Change the brightness settings in 'Settings', 'Display'
  • Turn the back light on always in 'Settings', 'Display'. To turn it off, hold the aback button.
  • DRM tags are placed on downloaded music to prevent you from putting a music file on a different device: i.e. iTunes to Zune. Right now, it may be best simply to purchase CDs and rip them to your computer. However, DRM (that's Digital Rights Management) regulations are changing, as many companies, including giant Apple Computer, are locking down on record companies. Thus in the future, TV shows, movies, and music purchased from iTunes, Rhapsody, eMusic, Zune Marketplace, etc. will play on any player or software.

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Categories: Portable Media Players