It seems that Microsoft has finally decided to kill off the Zune HD once and for all. The announcement was made official during the Windows Phone Radio podcast and the company has reinstated the end-of-life message on the Zune support page.
The defunct media player suffered the same fate twice last week. The device was initially pulled from the shelves at Zune.net, leading most in the media to assume the product line was a goner. It was later resurrected by a company spokesperson on Twitter, saying that product page was still live and that a publishing mishap was to blame for the error.
Microsoft then updated their Zune support page with an official message that indicated they would no longer be making any new Zune players and instead were moving forward with their Windows Phone platform for mobile music and video.
The very next day, Microsoft retracted the Zune statement and said the device was available once again. The company also removed the explanation on the Zune support page as if it had never happened.
As of today, the discontinued statement has been put back online and the Zune player is listed as out of stock at Microsoft’s online store. The Windows Phone Radio podcast team also indicate the device is no longer being made (around 12 minutes, 30 seconds into the broadcast).
At this point we have no idea what Redmond is up to and it seems neither do they. It’s entirely possible that Microsoft is trying to milk every bit of publicity from the media as possible, which could be working. Another idea is that they are simply undecided on what they want to do with existing stock of the media player. Or maybe there are some serious communication issues between departments.