Microsoft's Zune HD is real and likely to appear on the company's now-traditional September unveiling schedule, SuperSite for Windows creator Paul Thurrott said on Wednesday. He cites those within Microsoft for the date and is supported by other contacts that echo the same claim. Hardware traits, as well as the actual ship date, haven't been corroborated.
The news further appears to debunk rumors of a major June update and should be accompanied by releases in the UK and other territories. The absence of the Zune outside of Canada and the US was given part of the blame poor holiday sales where the iPod and other devices have much wider distribution.
While definite specifications for the Zune HD aren't known, it's suspected that the player will not only have a touchscreen and Wi-Fi to match the iPod touch but will have an NVIDIA Tegra chip powerful enough to play HD video at native resolution. Some rumors have also hinted at multi-touch input and that the Zune HD may entirely replace the existing "click pad" design, with both flash and hard drive versions getting the same basic profile.