Fry’s Blows Microsoft’s Cover Again

Fry's_8GB_Zune_Blue.jpgIt turns out there are actually two contenders for this week’s Worst Kept Secret award in the mobile music arena. One of them is pretty obvious by this point. The other one, however, is a 120GB version of the Microsoft Zune, which mysteriously appeared on a Fry’s Electronics shelf last week. Now Fry’s pulled another one out of its hat, and surreptitiously added an 8GB flash Zune in blue to its online store for $149.99, as CNET News reports.

Now Zune’s are known for their (heavily restricted) Wi-Fi capability, which in theory lets you share music between friends, but in reality is fairly useless since so few people have Zunes. However, the new device has an intriguing little item in its feature list called “Device to Cloud,” as the report quotes:

“Access thousands of wireless hot spots around the country to automatically update your collection, browse Zune Marketplace, refresh Channels, exchange favorites with friends, or buy songs you’ve tagged from your FM radio,” according to the Frys.com description.

That sounds an awful lot like the Starbucks/Wi-Fi/iTunes Store contraption, doesn’t it? The Channels reference is probably a new Internet radio capability, similar to Apple’s Pandora app.