Microsoft “OneApp”, possible app store for Zune HD?


Whilst attention has shifted towards Windows 7 and Office 2010 for the time being, Microsoft’s other major product launch up for this holiday season, the Zune HD, is always at the back of our heads. On one hand, the unceremonious announcement of the Zune HD late May helped confirm many of the rumored technical specifications of the device, but at the same time there is still a lining of mystery over how its browser works and what other capabilities the device may have.

A trademark application by Microsoft early last week could be an indication of what more the Zune HD might do, applications.

Trademark application 77775625 for the trademark “ONEAPP”, or alternatively pseudo-marked “One Application”, is classified as a trademark for “online retail store services facilitating the download of computer software for use on mobile phones, media players and other portable electronic devices”.

Furthermore, a separate classification describes,

computer software for allowing mobile device users to send messages, make payments and access and play music, games and videos on mobile devices; computer software platforms for developing mobile applications; computer software, namely, software development tools for the creation of mobile applications; computer software for running retail store site for purchase and download of mobile applications over wireless networks

Of course all of this is assuming the mention of “media players” is intentional, but considering the Zune has always been a Windows CE device under heavy disguise, it’s not entirely far-fetched either. Certainly if XNA games is any indication already, then these devices are perfectly capable of running practical applications.

What’s even more interesting is the actual word, “OneApp”, which definitely gives the impression that the applications are somehow universal across classes of devices. It’s no secret that the Windows Mobile 7 team is collaborating with the Zune team. Write-once apps that works on both Windows Mobile and Zune? Wouldn’t that be nice.

78 insightful thoughts

  1. Well, if it does allow third-party content, I honestly look forward to learning to developing for the Zune HD to create a Remote Control app for Media Center-enabled PCs. I mean, honestly. Not only would it be able to change channel, record, etc via WiFi, but stream audio and video wirelessly as well.

    If anyone fancies joining in, lemme know?

  2. Even the possibility of apps on the Zune HD is great – hopefully this is more than just a broadly applied Trademark application and is the sign of a common development platform, distribution and runtime for Windows Mobile/Phone and Zune HD!

  3. I’m very excited about the Zune HD, but then I’m also an owner of a Zune 120GB and previously a Zune 30GB player too, and I’m an avid supporter of most products the company releases (even despite their numerous flaws).

    I’m also a Windows Mobile user, and yes, if I can use the same apps on my Zune as on my phone, that would be really spiffy… not to mention I can see numerous WinMo groups like XDA Developers and PPC Geeks developing for it.

    Let’s hope this pans out! 🙂

  4. Sounds great although I’d be happy if they just released the Zune (especially the ZuneHD) worldwide and all at the same time!

  5. I hope they have a version for outside of the US… ie. without all the digital radio crap.

    What am I saying, I really want an all in one device- I hope the Zune software for WM is good. Also, some good and cheap WM phones become available… here.

  6. JaycobC the presence of the web browser make this very interesting. You dont have to develop for the ZuneHD per se. You could deploy your app on the web and access it from the Zune browser. You wont need to learn any new APIs specifically to create the Media Center remote control.

  7. @anon: I have a partially dead Zune 80. The hard drive is defective and I can only use a tiny slice of the total capacity. It’s a problem that hundreds of people have reported on the Zune forums.

  8. sounds good, the .net compact framework really lends its self to cross platform deployments, this could be a very good thing.

  9. Looks like MS is taking all the right steps to unify the Media experiences across devices (Xbox, WM, Zune) with the Zune experience. With WM7, Zune is the default Media Manager/Player on the phone. So the Zune experience is coming to WM (hopefully the Music and Video stores as well… pls pls). The only missing device in Windows PC (wish Windows Media Player gets replaced by Zune software).

    It would be great if even the app store is universal across all these devices (atleast WM and Zune).

  10. What would be quite cool is they allow game developers to not just be limited by the touch screen and you can plug in an Xbox 360 controller and play games with it even on your TV seeing as it has a HDMI output (well the stand cable does).

  11. Very cool, I’m so looking forward to the Zune HD & new WinMo devices. I do remember reading an article way back about Microsoft was looking for a name for an online programs downloads store for devices, I guess they found one. I like it ‘OneApp’.
    Sorry but I had to, this came to me:

    “OneApp to rule them all, OneApp to find them,
    OneApp to bring them all and in the light bind them
    In the Land of Microsoft where the software lies.”

    Microsoft is becoming more & more awesome 🙂
    P.S. Any ideas to where that “Project Pink” Microsoft is working on is hiding?

  12. Heres some Hardware facts

    Zune HD:multitouch interface with gestures
    itouch:multitouch interface with gestures

    Zune HD:3.3 inch screen with OLED vivid 16:9 widescreen display (480 x 272)
    itouch: 3.5 inch screen with LCD 3:2 display (480 x 320)

    Zune HD:built-in HD radio receiver

    Zune HD:HD video output at 720p

    Zune HD: wifi 802.11b/g/and maybe n
    itouch:wifi 802.11b/g

    Zune HD:Intergration wiht XBOX LIVE

    noting those facts The Zune HD is far more advanced and superior when it comes to hardware but as far as soft ware goes there are some question marks but on the other hand Microsoft hasnt revealed all yet so there should be. As far as software goes we only know enough now to say the itouch has a slight upper hand like apps and safari over internet explorer(although I’m perfectly fine with ie), also The Zune HD may have flash in its internet browser if it does then its browser obviously wins seeing as the itouch only has a specail form of youtube and not a real flashplayer. So that only leaves the itouch with the advantage of apps, but that is the most important advantage of all…. I’m 99% sure The Zune HD will have apps too if it does the itouch loses at everything software and hardware minus their 480 x 320 screen resolution but if you think about it they dont even win in screen resolution, it might be a tie even though The Zune HD’s resolution is 480 x 272 because the itouch’s screen is 3.5 inch and The Zune HD’s screen is 3.3 inch and that 0.2 inch less is where those 48 extra pixels went. For instance The Zune HD’s screen is like the itouch’s screen with your hand covering 0.2 inches of the itouch’s screen, the actual pixels per square mm is the same, the screen is just slightly smaller for The Zune HD but the actual resolution is identical and how it looks! That would mean that The Zune HD beats the itouch in every category-but! only if they get apps which like I said before I’m 99% sure they will and if they have flash in their browser.

    Also Dan the dumbass said that no one would develop for Microsoft app store if they had one. People have been making games for the zune for a really long time so they already have a good amount of supportive programmers and Microsoft is going to port alot of apps from their mobile app store, sidebar and they’re already working with people to make apps for the HD’s launch. When the itouch launch they didn’t even have an app store so Microsoft’s Zune HD will have a quicker start out of the gate than Apple did causing for beter sales in the long run.

    The Zune HD is better than the itouch in every way
    Microsoft > apple
    Zune HD > itouch

  13. @Leverne you forgot something:

    ZuneHD: Available in the US: ?, Available in Australia: probably never
    iPod Touch: Available now.

    Seriously, wake me up when there is something to report on.

    Btw, on the ZuneHD site it states: ” and touchscreen QWERTY keyboard.” Wasn’t it Balmer that said “who would want a hand held device without a physical keyboard.”

    Don’t get me wrong, I really hope the ZuneHD puts a bit of fire under Apple but I am not holding my breath.

  14. I second that MAK
    I actually owned a 16 gig iTouch for a week. then i hated myself for buying an apply product and returned it. no but seriously, the iTouch is the biggest waste of money ever for these reasons(most of which have been mentioned):
    1 Opera web browser does not support flash content.
    2 Screen gets smudged extremely easily and is hard to view for long periods of time.
    3 No digital radio receiver – not even a normal one
    4 iTunes takes FOREVER to update and loads useless stuff onto your computer
    5 2nd gen iTouch has yet to be jailbroken making it useful.

    The main problems facing Microsoft are:
    Developing a web browser that doesn’t make people go to Mozilla
    Developing an intuitive interface to compete with the iTouch’s
    Getting a strong base of apps to launch with HD
    Making the Zune software universal. WMP can be used with non-Zune devices. The universal Zune must cater to all media players.

    Other than that i’m really looking forward to throwing some cash Microsoft’s way this fall.

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  16. Makes perfect sense to me, Apple has a single development platform with the iPhone and iPod Touch. Microsoft needs to unify their media player/smartphone API as well. I WOULD say XNA, but that is very tailored to gaming. And .NET CF leaves a lot to be desired from a UI perspective.

  17. “OneApp” isn’t for Zune HD. It’s the nomal name of “Kojax” that is an application engine running on J2ME for feature phones developed by Microsoft UPG.

  18. @Jacob: Thanks for the heads up, seems plausible “OneApp” is the commercial name for codename “Kojax” which is designed for mobile phones. However, that specific reference to “media players” is still interesting.

  19. BTW, the name OneApp was *ahem* ‘influenced’ by the GSMA OneAPI (a common baseline for network APIs across operators). Used together the two could be pretty powerful…

  20. Jacob ,

    I have been dying to write Media center app in Zune. Glade to see similar interest from someone else. it would be nice to team up and plan. I also planing to control insteaon device/ Ip cam / eathernet IR based power controler.


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