Dear active Zune users: First off, why? Second, it pains us to tell you that Microsoft has announced it will retire its Zune Music service on Nov. 15, delivering a final shovel of dirt (sans red rose) atop the one-time iPod competitor.
Microsoft stopped making its portable media player in 2011, but continued to offer its digital subscription service, which allowed users to stream or download content on the device for a flat fee. As long as your Zune is alive and kicking it will continue to function as an MP3 player, and Microsoft notes that you’ll still be able to transfer music to and from the device. Just not from the Zune service.
One caveat is that if the content on your device contains digital rights management (DRM) technology, it “may not play if the license can’t be renewed.” (By 2009, all the major labels had dropped the copy protections from their digital files.)