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Active: Dec. 15 2002 17:16
|Thu, Sep. 12 2002 00:24|
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After computers, TV's too might start displaying such messages. Computers running on an enhanced Windows XP are eager to replace your TV. But with nothing new on offer and similar products from its own partners, Microsoft just might have to bite the dust, even with HP on its side.
Microsoft with HP and Samsung in tag has taken the lead in the race to develop products that will turn PC's into a digital entertainment hub. Microsoft has enhanced and customized its Windows XP operating system, aptly named it Windows XP Media Center Edition as well), to support computers like the HP Media Center that will serve as a single interface to home users for accessing their office application, DVD player and other digital media tasks.
Though its final configuration is a tightly guarded secret, it can be expected to be a high-end desktop (see box: Viva la PC). The HP Media Center will enable consumers to use computers to watch or record TV, burn DVD's, use an Electronic Programming Guide to pick shows to watch from, all this in addition to the common tasks a PC is expected to perform. The immediate beneficiaries are going to be the first time buyers, as instead of buying all gadgets individually; they can simply go in for the HP media center instead.
But here's where the honeymoon ends. Copying and burning TV content using the Media Center might be a breeze, but the fact that you can't replay it on a device other than the one it was recorded on, will surely blow the wind out of you. Playing judge, Microsoft has included copy-protection that will use encryption to lock recorded TV content to the media center it was recorded on. So if you record a TV serial using your media center, you can't go and watch it on a friend's VCD player or even on the second VCD player you might be having. Already people can record television programs onto video tapes using one VCR, and view the tape on a different video player. So are you going to spend money to make a perfectly legal task illegal? Not me, certainly.
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