As I travel around the North Sea and above the Arctic Circle, I have enjoyed playing with my Zune HD, a nice little device, I have loved since I got it a few years ago even though It is an American device being used in Canada. Other than teething pains with the radio presets the only thing missing in Canada was the Social feature. Not something I really miss. The Zune team was able to fix an issue with Canadian call signs not being recognized for radio presets, but that does not appear to have been fixed for other countries. In the UK, the call signs do not show up as the four letter callsigns used in North America, but rather as BBC 1, BBC 2 and BBC 3. When the preset is made, the UK call signs are replaced (at least for me) with a Canadian call sign, CFJM, so it does not appear to be using the data transmitted by the station or there are some checks and the default value remains. Even Iceland had a few radio stations, but their station information seems to include other information. I did try to document the various screens, but taking pictures with my camera ended up being a CSI delight. Excellent detail on the fingerprints, but the images on the screen were washed out.With a touch UI, fingerprints wil always be a problem. So to make the Zune HD international, Microsoft needs to find out the standard of information that is transmitted by radio stations to identify their signals and use the frequency, call sign and hopefully the station’s catch phrase to make the radio presets. The information is displayed while the station is playing, so it is just a matter of properly catching it when the preset is created. One other point for making the Zune HD a nice traveling device is to remove the requirement for power when creating alarms. I have fell asleep many times listening to the radio, so the power drain for using the Zune HD as an alarm can not be any worse. I use a laptop to charge my Zune HD while traveiling, but like me it likes to sleep when it becomes inactive. The one downside I have had with the Zune HD is the cover I chose. On this trip, the magnetics in the cover have successfully wiped out my room card three times.
John Marshall… Visio MVP Visio.MVPs.org