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September 29, 2011

Zune expands to Canada, drops Zune Pass price in US

Rock on, Canada! Starting Monday, the Zune Music Marketplace and Zune Music Pass is expanding north, giving Windows Phone owners in Canada access to more than 14 million tracks from all the major labels, as well as tens of thousands of indie labels.

A Zune Pass will cost C$9.99 per month (or C$99.90 a year). Besides a Windows Phone, subscribers can also listen on a Xbox 360, Windows PC, Zune device, and (New to Windows Phone? Here’s how to use a Zune Pass on it.)

New streaming music videos

That’s not the only big Zune news today. Starting Monday, Zune Music Pass subscribers in the US and Canada can also now stream tens of thousands of music videos through the Zune PC software (and soon the Xbox 360).

Cheaper Zune Music Pass

Budget-minded music buffs are also in luck. On Monday, Microsoft starts selling a new, less-expensive Zune Music Pass. The new plan costs $9.99 a month (about $5 cheaper than the current plan) but gives you unlimited, on-demand access to the same catalog of music and (now) music videos.  It also includes unlimited streaming access on a Xbox 360 and

There is one important change:  Under the new plan, you no longer get 10 free MP3s to keep each month.  (Current subscribers can stay on the $14.99 plan with 10 free downloads, if they choose. )

Subscribers to the $9.99 plan can synch downloaded songs with up to four devices (1 PC + any combination of PC, Zune HD, or Windows Phone).

Look for the official announcement on the Zune Insider blog—or sign up for a Zune Music Pass.