Microsoft, CableLabs Agreement Aims At Digital Cable-Ready Media Center PCs For Holidays ’06

The PCTV picture could be a whole lot clearer for some consumers next year now that Microsoft and CableLabs have agreed on DRM and support for CableCARD5 in Media Center XPs. Thet should provide access to one-way programming from MSOs, including premium HDTV, on the PC and across a home network with “compliant network devices” like Xbox 360. At the same time, cable investments in “high-value content” will be protected.
Time Warner Cable CEO and CableLabs chairman Glenn Britt says in the press release: “This agreement carefully balances the need to preserve the flexibility of the personal computer for consumers with the need for cable operators to be confident that the hardware and software shipped with compliant Media Center PCs will function like a CableCARD-enabled digital television.”

This has been in the works for more than two years, which seems like an eternity in today’s fast-moving consumer tech universe. By the time the cable-ready PCs are on sale, that will make it close to four years between idea and execution. And companies wonder why customers go elsewhere for solutions?
Press release |

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