Windows: Powering the TV?

Microsoft is incorporating its TV software into Whistler, thenext version of Windows 2000–in what looks like another attempt to find lifefor Windows in the ‘appliances’ era, as well as a retreat from the cableset-top box business that it originally aimed the software at. It demonstratedPCs running Whistler with Microsoft TV software at a broadcasting convention inAmsterdam.

In the Microsoft vision, the future PCs serve as a sort ofentertainment hub of a home network, powering digital video recorders anddigital music jukeboxes. PCs running Whistler with the new software wouldreceive TV signals and interactive programming, and use a TV set as a monitor.However, Microsoft also has an upcoming TV set-top box business, where itlicenses the design and software to manufacturers, and this announcement couldsqueeze that segment. On the other hand, there could be a completely separatemarket for very low-priced set-top boxes for interactive programming and basicInternet access.

Microsoft considers interactive TV an integral part of itsnew .Net e-initiative–a network of devices, appliances, PCs and televisionsthat are all connected to the Internet, corporate networks and one another viacomputers running Windows 2000 and its derivatives. 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *