Sports Bloggers weigh in: TV on your PC, Windows Media Center and What’s Next

April 3, 2009

3382057793_9f3fd86e1311As we mentioned a few weeks ago, we invited a group of sports bloggers to Microsoft for a Windows Media Center focus group to talk about their sports viewing habits and to hear their feedback on the sports viewing experiences in Windows Media Center.

A few of the participants this week shared their thoughts on their visit, Windows Media Center and the future of TV:

Pacific Northwest blogger and Portland Trailblazer enthusiast, Ian Thackaberry, posted on his blog, Thacknet, that when he originally thought of  Windows Media Center, he assumed it to be just a hub to store music and photos, but now, through content details and new features, it is “working to bridge the gap between the Internet and the Television.”

If you’ve been following the news, you’ve probably seen that the TV/PC convergence topic Ian mentioned is hot and buzz-worthy. As we -content enthusiasts- look for different and innovative ways to watch our favorite shows, games and movies, we’re interested in see what’s next for TV on the PC enthusiasts.

Steve Perrin, aka Clipper Steve, also wrote about his “Trip to Seattle to watch TV” on his SB Nation blog, Clips Nation. Steve talked about his first encounter with the TV/PC phenomenon and questioned whether it was necessary to rely on both as they ideally had the same functions.  He also noted his reliance on his DVR and the “harrowing” experience that followed after the DVR broke and he was forced to watch everything in real time.  He noted that one of the good things about Windows Media Center is that “in theory I could rewind and record and do all those cool DVR things to my heart’s content.”

 What are your thoughts on the buzz around the convergence of the TV and the PC? We’re curious to hear your thoughts on what’s next.


Get in the Game with the Sports Channel for Windows Media Center!

March 5, 2009

sports-channel-finalBy now you’ve probably seen that we’re working with various sports bloggers who’ve weighed in on their TV-viewing preferences and the TV on Your PC movement. You may have also been wondering what we’ve got up our sleeves.

Well, have we got news for you…Going live today in time for the Men’s College Basketball Tournament later this month, the new Sports Channel for Windows Media Center offers a wide range of sports coverage from, Fox Sports, and more – all in one place. The Sports Channel features breaking sports news, interviews of your favorite players, the option to track your fantasy sports teams, and more, with joining the ranks as a fresh content addition to Windows Media Center.

If you’re connected to the internet, simply launch Windows Media Center on a PC or laptop running Windows Vista Home Premium or Ultimate, scroll down to Sports, and click on the Sports Channel tile to start tapping into programming from all of the aforementioned sites. Easy as pie 🙂

As you’re gearing up for the upcoming Men’s College Basketball Tournament, make sure to check out the Sports Channel’s “College Hoops” feature to get everything you need for your tournament games in March and April using Windows Media Center. Here’s what you’ll get:

Watch complete games in condensed form shortly after the games are completed. (Condensed  form means you get all the game action without timeouts, half time, ball retrieval, etc.)
– Watch marquee games in the first two rounds, then view all the games after that through to the championship game

Game Highlights (1-2 min)
– Highlights from every tournament game (63 games total)
Post Game Interviews (1-2 min)
– Post game interviews as available

Buzzer Beaters (2-10 min)
– Last few minutes plus of select games with great finishes

Best of all, this particular effort is just the latest in a line of content investments and applications in Windows Media Center aimed at providing new and easier ways for people (you!) to find and access compelling content. The Sports Channel joins the NBC Olympics on the Go service and the MSNBC News beta (now out of beta) which both went live last year.

Boot up your PC, click on the green button to explore the Sports Channel and tell us what you think!

Enrique Rodriguez: TV’s future, 2 to 5 years out

January 15, 2009

Enrique Rodriguez, Corporate VP of the Connected TV Business Group at Microsoft, shares his thoughts on the future of television.

See more videos from Microsoft Connected TV.

Windows 7 on Twitter

January 15, 2009
Follow @MSWindows on Twitter

Follow @MSWindows on Twitter

We love Twitter, so this is excellent news. The Microsoft Windows team is using Twitter to post the latest Windows 7 beta announcements, answer questions, and share useful tips and links. They’re more than happy to help out with an issue, and to listen to your feedback — follow them at @MSWindows.

Microsoft exec shows off Media Center-based home

January 7, 2009

There’s a nice slideshow and article on Electronic House about one Microsoft executive’s own Windows Media Center setup in his home. If you’re a gadget and/or media geek, there’s a lot here to geek out over.

Lifeware lets users control the music, temperature and other settings in any room of the house

Lifeware lets users control the music, temperature and other settings in any room of the house

Some of it (like the home theater) is clearly out of our price range, but there’s quite a lot that you can re-create in your home or apartment using relatively inexpensive software and extenders.