Zune HD2, Microsoft's Windows Phone That Never Was?

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At the very start of Windows Phone's life, were Microsoft planning their own smartphone? It's an interesting thought (especially with the online rumours about Windows Phone 8 device being manufactured by Redmond) and it's being discussed on this post at 'Of Spaceships and Boomboxes.' With some concept sketches, renders and marketing materials, the Zune HD2 smartphone comes to life.

While the knee-jerk reaction to Microsoft's Zune line of media players is to giggle, the final entry in the range- the Zune HD - was probably one of the finest standalone media player from any major company. Regarded now as a precursor to the Windows Phone range, the Zune HD said a lot about Microsoft's aspirations. And the mythical Zune HD2 says even more:

The following images are by Greg McNamara and were done for Astro studios. Astro was the design firm who first helped design the Zune HD. The images, titled Zune Remastered, show early sketches and an apparently finished model of the next Zune device. A third image on McNamara’s page shows a case study (or concepts on the type of buyer for the device).  Now the third image is interesting because it makes this Zune sound like it was meant to be a phone; and if that is the case, is this the first Windows Phone?

The Zune HD2

You can pick up the rest of the story over on the blog post. It's a very convincing argument on what the Zune HD2 could have been, but as anyone watching technology will tell you, ever company has the projects that never were. It's just that in this case, i think I would have been queuing up to replace my own Zune HD

Source / Credit: Of Spaceships and Boomboxes