Hoping to boost sales during the upcoming holiday shopping season Microsoft has made a few Zune-related announcements over the past few days, which include a software update as well as a new offer for Zune Pass subscribers and price cuts across the board.

The update being released brings the device’s software up to version 3.1, which adds some new free game titles – Checkers, Sudoku, and Space Battle – refreshes the Zune Social, and makes some stability and performance improvements. The company is also making its $14.99 a month Zune Pass service a little more interesting, by allowing customers to permanently keep 10 tracks every month at no extra cost, even after they cancel their subscription.

As for the price cuts, the software maker has announced a drop for all its flash-based models. The 4GB version will drop to $99, the 8GB model will drop by $10 to $139, and finally the 16GB model will sell for $179, down from $199. Microsoft may be fighting an uphill battle against Apple in the multimedia player arena, but the company is definitely not ready to throw in the towel yet.