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Getting to know the Zune software

This topic is about the Zune software – what it does and why you should install it on your PC. But first, a few definitions are in order.

When someone says "Zune", it can be hard to figure out exactly what they mean. That's because there are at least five things they could be referring to:

  • Zune player – Also known as a Zune device, this is a portable music and video player (what some might simply call an "MP3 player"). It's small and optimised for entertainment. It doesn't make phone calls or do most of the other stuff that Windows Phones can do.
  • Zune app – This is built into the Music + Videos hub on your Windows Phone. Essentially, it turns your phone into a Zune player.
  • Zune Marketplace – This is an online store where you can get music, videos, podcasts, apps, games and more. The store is accessible from a variety of devices, including PCs, Zune players and Windows Phone 7. Some things in Zune Marketplace are free and others cost money. Zune Marketplace is not available in all countries/regions.
  • Xbox Music Pass – This is a music subscription service that is available through Zune Marketplace. For a monthly fee, Xbox Music Pass subscribers can download and stream an unlimited number of songs to their phone, PC and Zune player. Xbox Music Pass is not available in all countries/regions.
  • Zune software – This is a free program that you install on your computer. It's a digital media jukebox, and a vital link between your phone and PC.

So, here are the top three reasons why you need to install the Zune software on your computer so you can get the most out of your phone:

  1. To download stuff (such as music, videos, films, TV programmes and podcasts) from Zune Marketplace to your computer.

  2. To sync stuff between your PC and your phone. This includes the music, pictures, videos, films, TV programmes and podcasts on your computer that you want to copy to your phone. And it also includes the pictures and videos you've taken on your phone that you want to copy to your PC.

  3. To update your phone software (to get new features, performance enhancements, and so on).

There are lots of other things you can do with the Zune software. For example, you can use it to rip audio CDs, import an iTunes library and find out what music your friends are listening to. For more detailed information about the Zune software, go to


The Zune software won't work on Windows RT.

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