My quest to effectively use apps on a UMPC without using too much screen real estate continues. Just wanted to mention these little tidbits I’ve been using when streaming audio on my Samsung Q1P. Right off the bat, I make extensive use of the Windows Media Player and iTunes toolbars. You have to activate them in your Taskbar, but once you do, you’ll be able to minimize WMP or iTunes and still have access to the controls. To activate them, just tap and hold on the Taskbar and choose the Toolbars option. Look for the Windows Media Player and iTunes in the Toolbars selections and make sure they’re active.
iTunes also has a mini-player mode that helps save space if the iTunes toolbar is too small for you. Just click Advanced and then select "Switch to Mini Player" for a small but usable interface that will reside on your UMPC desktop. It takes up a a little more real estate, but if you run several apps at one time, your Taskbar can get filled pretty quickly and this option will provide more breathing room.
So what about Zune? I’m currently streaming music using my Zune Pass subscription on the Q1P and it’s working flawlessly. Obviously, you can install the Zune software on a UMPC, but you’ll need to up the resolution first, as it won’t install on an 800 x 480 screen. Once installed, it will run on any of the standard UMPC resolutions. But wait, there’s no Zune toolbar option! That’s a bit of a disappointment and I hope it gets addressed in the near future.
In the meantime, you can use a mini-player version of the Zune software, although I didn’t see it in the menu. Look at the bottom right of the Zune interface, down below the playlist. You should see two icons; one is a fullscreen option, but the other reduces Zune to a small mini-player, similar to the iTunes option. Windows Media Player has the same option; again, look at the bottom right for a button. Now you can listen to tunes without taking up too much space on that 7-inch, 800 x 480 screen!