Microsoft’s attempt at hatching up an iPod competitor back in 2006 didn’t go so well. It launched the Zune music player back on November 14, 2006. Through six years of support, the growing lineup of Zune players outgrew the demand for them (and Windows Phone 7 devices). And so, they were discontinued in 2012. But the music services behind the player went onward. That is, they will be going up to November 15 of this year.
Microsoft is migrating its Xbox and Zune music services into Groove, what’s basically now the unified music client for Microsoft devices. If you used to pay $9.99 for a monthly Zune or Xbox Music Pass, you’ll automatically be converted to a monthly Groove Music Pass with the same rate. Quarterly pass-holders also get switched to a monthly pass while annual subscribers will see a reduced charge of $99.90.
Groove lets you store music files onto OneDrive and listen to them from there to your Groove-compatible device (Windows 10, Android and iOS included). It used to be the case that the Zune Marketplace allowed you to buy and stream music, movies and grab 10 free songs every month before it got shut down in 2014.
If you happen to have a Zune player, we know what you have to ask — and the answer is “yes,” you can still sync .mp3 files (depending on the tracks’ DRM licensing status) on and off your device and keep them playing for as long as you can keep that thing going. And may good fortune be with you for that.