Good old Amazon...
It seems that the monstrous online retailer is often the source for leaking release details and/or pricing for the latest must-have equipment and now it has done it again with the Zune HD.
The site says we can expect the 16GB Zune HD for just $219.99 with the 32GB model coming it at $289.99. Yes, we are looking at dollar figures here, but as an indicator the 16GB and 32GB versions of the Apple iPod touch cost $299 and $399 respectively so Microsoft is clearly going for the throat.
As for a release date, Amazon simply states the duo are "Available for pre-order" but yet more leaks - this time at Best Buy - suggest 8 September could be the rather imminent arrival time. There is no word however on if the Zune HD will be the first Zune to go officially on sale outside of the US.
Yes, we're pretty excited and yes, for those who missed the original story, we are talking about a Zune. This is because the player will pack in a 3.3in multi-touch screen, output 720p HD video, integrate WiFi and have a built in web browser. We are still awaiting confirmation of most things though, such as size, weight, battery life, chipset (Tegra is rumoured), the type of Bluetooth support and whether or not it will sport a mooted 3MP camera.
That said, we expect Microsoft to be liberal with its codec support and enable drag and drop file transfers. So, in short, this could well be the iPod touch alternative for those who have always disliked Apple - and from what we can gather, that's quite a lot of you...
Expect something official to drop soon.
Update: A leaked display stand uncovered by Engadget suggests 15 September may now be the US Zune HD launch date.
Update 2: Launch has now been confirmed for 15 September in the US.
Amazon Listing Now Pulled (always a promising sign)