Windows Phone 7 Tips & Tricks: Zune Player

August 6, 2011, By Christian Cawley

Microsoft’s critically-acclaimed Zune music player is included within Windows Phone 7, offering music, podcast and movie playback. All you need to get music onto your phone is the Zune client, which we’ll come to later on in this tips and tricks series.

Accessed via the Music & Videos hub, the Zune player is capable of helping you to browse through tracks, artists, genres and to skip back and forwards within the currently playing track.

It’s really easy to use and Windows Phone devices offer great sound quality. As with many other apps and features on this platform, however, there are plenty of shortcuts and tricks to be aware of!

Windows Phone 7 Tips & Tricks: Zune Player

Shuffling & Skipping Tracks

When you’re playing an album in Zune, you can find a nice selection of additional features, such as downloaded album art and a couple of useful controls – a repeat and a shuffle icon. These great hidden extras are ideal for changing the way you listen to the album, particularly useful for compilation albums.

Note that while you can skip through tracks using the forward and back buttons, fast forwarding in the Zune player is performed by tapping and holding the forward button.

Controlling Zune While the Screen is Locked

Rather than unlock your phone every time you want to change the track that you’re listening to, you can take advantage of a great feature that allows you to access the Zune controls from the volume menu. This is particularly useful if you’re listening to music over headphones or even via an in-car hands-free system.

While tracks are playing in Zune and the phone is locked, tap the volume buttons to display the miniature player window. Here you will see the play and skip buttons, which can be used to play/pause the current track or move onto the next one; you can of course also adjust the volume!

Free and Premium Music via Zune

Using the Zune player you can connect to the Marketplace to purchase and download new tracks to your phone. From time to time free tracks are made available, but you will also be able to select from popular artists in the “Featured” and “Artist of the week” section.

However, this is of course a massive library of music, and it’s easy to get lost. Fortunately the Windows Phone search tool is on hand to help you out.

Simply tap the Search button on your phone and type in the search phrase – a few moments later you should find a healthy set of search results to browse through! Note that some tracks are available as previews – you might listen to the first 30 seconds of a track, for instance, a great way to sample something new before purchasing!

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