Chris Lanier, master of all things Media Center, takes a look at Fiji, the long-rumored codename for the next version of Media Center. Basically, Fiji would be the version of Media Center that was supposed to ship with Windows Vista, if they’d only had enough time to finish it. Microsoft announced a beta program 62 days ago (I blogged it and signed up for it), but they’ve yet to actually start sending out the beta or invites to it.
Chris surmises that Fiji is far too delayed at this point to actually ship this year. In fact, he’s heard talk that it won’t show up until the second half of 2008. Oy. Seems like a real shame for the platform, which relies on the support of an enthusiast community as it hopes to hit mainstream, to suffer from such delays.
The main holdups seem to be DirecTV/Dish support and HD DVD playback, which means another Microsoft product held up by big incomple features, when maybe it could have been released already if they had thought simpler in the first place. The best thing for users and the platform would have been concentrating on finishing the Vista update and working on the new features seperately, since all Vista users would benefit from the update, while far fewer will ever use it with satellite TV tuners (and HD DVD might not even be around by late 2008). Is it to late to simplify and just ship it?