First Looks at Windows Vista Media Center

"Microsoft’s Media Center Edition of Windows XP has had a hard time. Though it’s hard to call it a poor seller, MCE certainly has a market penetration that represents only a tiny fraction of the many millions of computers running Windows XP. And why should it? Most users don’t have nice hi-def TVs hooked up to their PCs, or TV tuners, or really any need to enjoy their music, video, and TV stored on their PC via a 10-foot user interface. It doesn’t help that the first edition of Media Center wasn’t very good, either. Then again, Microsoft bounced back with its second effort, Media Center Edition 2005, one of the most improved software products ever.

Over the last year, and continuing for the next couple years, digital media on the PC has really started to take center stage. People actually care about video, music, and TV on their PCs. Managing all these things with a simple, intuitive interface that can be easily used from across the room has become more of a priority. Microsoft recognizes this, and as such it will no longer segregate MCE to its own SKU, destined for PCs masquerading as set-top boxes. With Windows Vista, the Media Center functions will be built into the "Home Premium" and "Ultimate" editions, which will probably quadruple its installed base in no time flat. We all know Windows Vista will cause a huge change in the way the desktop looks and feels, and MCE is getting a similar face-lift."

Read the rest here 


Filed under Windows Vista

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