Microsoft is reportedly preparing to release Zune 2.

Various reports predict the company will introduce its new player either today or tomorrow, preparing to get the device into the hands of eager customer by November's critical US shopping period.

The range will include a thinner hard drive-based Zune and a flash-based player designed to look a little like the iPod nano.

The company's Zune players have so far failed to ignite the market, with consumers generally opting for iPods.