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Internet TV Launched For Media Center

If you look in Windows Vista Media Center now, you should see the new Internet TV button. Under there, you’ll get to look at a number of interesting videos, including every single episode of Arrested Development, concerts, movie trailers, music videos, viral videos, sports highlights, news stories and more. All of it is served streaming over the internet, and all of it is free and supported by the occasional ad.

I had the opportunity to talk to some guys from Microsoft about Internet TV at Digital Life, and they explained that this isn’t a full product, but rather a beta test for a bigger setup Microsoft would like to pull off. Basically, they want as many users as possible to try it out, watch as much video as possible, so Microsoft can stress test the system, see what works, and expand it into a full Internet TV platform for Media Center.

I think the whole think works beautifully. Assuming Microsoft can sign up enough content partners, it could provide a ton of free video content for Media Center users. With streaming to Extenders and the Xbox 360, Microsoft will be delivering free content as a major bonus to those who invest in this ecosystem, and it can start selling content as well down the road.

If Microsoft wants to be truly smart, it’ll use this to find a way to deliver extra content to owners of Windows Vista Ultimate as an Ultimate Extra, like free movies, or give them content earlier than everyone else. That’ll settle some of the complainers

photos by abrudtkuhl and @le

October 9th, 2007 Posted by Nathan Weinberg | Vista, Media Center, Windows | 4 comments

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  1. It has been a lot of content that I have seen MSN recently make available on its many outlets; MSN TV itself currently has a site where you can watch full-lenght episodes from various TV shows. It’s great that Microsoft is making all of these content partnerships because in the long run, it can use its massive audience to bring in a lot of ad cash.

    Comment by Albert | October 9, 2007

  2. This sounds awesome, and the screenshots look great.. BUT (and some of you knew there would be a but)… WHY OH WHY CAN’T MICROSOFT GIVE US THE SAME THING IN THE UK?? Please???? (and breathe..)

    Comment by Antony | October 10, 2007

  3. US only.

    Comment by Bob | October 10, 2007

  4. Antony, for now its just a test. Microsoft needs to iron out the infrastructure, draft agreements for content and sign up advertisers, and it needs to do that seperately in each country. I’d suggest looking into a way to access the U.S. material in the UK, and letting me know if you’re successful, since it could be a long while.

    Comment by Nathan Weinberg | October 23, 2007

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