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September 18, 2006

Brand Naming: Microsoft's Zune Takes On Apple's iPod

Microsoft ZuneThe Zune is out, finally. I have Previously blogged about Microsoft Zune and am very interested in seeing how much of the iPod's 75% share of the digital music player market it can grab.

The Zune Info blog is the best source for up to the minute news about the Zune release. Love it or hate it, it will be interesting to follow the market acceptance of this product, and to see how well the brand name, Zune, is received among its target market. The name will certainly add some creative depth to the Microsoft naming architecture. If you're curious, read about Microsoft’s imaginative strategy to trademark the Zune brand name.

iPod+iTunesThe Microsoft Zune is only one digital music player among many attempting to imitate Apple's success with iPod + iTunes. In the Wall Street Journal this morning, companies like Sandisk, Samsung, Microsoft, and others, are attempting to create a better digital music brand and service.

In some cases, co-branding is their strategy. For example, the well-respected Sandisk brand is teaming with the well-known RealNetwork's Rhapsody music service brand. Microsoft will connect its Zune player to its own online music service, Urge.

Zune_Wal-MartThe Gizmodo blog reported that we will soon be able to buy a Microsoft Zune at Wal-Mart. They might be reading too much into it, but Gizmodo thinks the linkage of the Wal-Mart and Microsoft brand giants seems a little puzzling. Although Wal-Mart is in the process of upgrading its merchandise and image, the typical Wal-Mart shopper doesn’t appear to be the target market for an mp3 player like Zune..

U2iPodEngadget reports that Apple will be updating its co-branded U2 iPod. The U2 and Apple brand names just seem to go together pefectly. Consumers will be happy to know that it looks like the ultra-cool U2 iPod will be reintroduced and revamped just in time to compete with the Microsoft Zune.

When it comes to brand naming, it's a never-ending battle between Apple and Microsoft.

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Posted by William Lozito at September 18, 2006 9:29 AM
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