Wal-Mart page briefly reveals Zune price

A product listing page on Wal-Mart's online store has given observant shoppers a brief glimpse of possible pricing for Microsoft's recently-announced Zune portable media player. The page, which is still in Google's cache, showed a $284.00 price tag for the device. As Engadget points out, Wal-Mart attempts to undercut recommended pricing whenever possible, so the $284 figure could suggest a slightly higher suggested price. Even $284 would put Microsoft at a disadvantage, however, since Apple slashed the price of its 30GB iPod to $249 one week ago. The Zune will also pack 30GB of storage, although its Wi-Fi capability could justify a higher cost for some.

Interestingly, a report by BetaNews suggests Apple's surprise price cut was in fact the reason Microsoft didn't announce pricing for its Zune player last Thursday. Sources at Redmond say the software giant considers matching or beating Apple's pricing scheme to be a major goal, which could forebode a final price tag closer to the $250 mark.

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