Skip navigation

What I learned this year shipping Zune 2

Dave Caulton offers up some interesting observations about Zune 2:

My lessons learned from Year 2 of Zune:

  • Shipping is good. Shipping is learning.
  • We really can execute on and innovative end to end experience.
  • The Zune software is amazingly nice.  It's also taught me that Burl Ives did some of the tracks on AC/DC's back in black album.  See here if this is a mystery to you.
  • The team can really rock n roll and get updates out rapidly.
  • It takes a whole lot of usability testing to get a Zune pad juuuuuust riiiiiiight.
  • Interaction designers look really funny with false long fingernails on so they can test the Zune Pad.
  • Ditto me re the long fingernails.
  • You can eat too much Yummi Teriyaki.
  • Strategy is nice, but it's possible to overdo it. But it's ok as long as it doesn't get in the way of executing. Sort of like Yummi Teriyaki, come to think of it...
  • Zune cards are much cooler than I would have thought.
  • Accessories can be fun.
  • Shipping the new features and clients to our best/early adopter customers through their v1 devices was the right thing to do.
  • Three managers in a year? No problem.
  • The cake is a lie. There is no cake.

Congrats to the whole team.  And thanks to everyone in the community that's enjoying the new features and/or products!

LOL. I'm proud to announce that I was the one who told Dave about the cake. :) 

A couple of my own observations on, um, his observations (some real, some not so much):

  • It's unclear that Zune does get updates out rapidly. We'll see how quickly 2.x gets updated before we can make intelligent comments about that. There was a huge wait between 1.x and 2.x though.

  • Zune cards, while "cool," are  way too slow.

  • You can never eat too much Yummi Teriyaki. That's ridiculous.

  • No one gives away cake for free, Dave. No one.
Hide comments


  • Allowed HTML tags: <em> <strong> <blockquote> <br> <p>

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.