Microsoft Launches WinXP Media Center Edition 2005
by Arie Slob
Hello Windows users,
Last Tuesday, at the Digital Entertainment Anywhere launch event in Los Angeles, Microsoft Chairman and Chief Software Architect Bill Gates publicly unveiled Windows XP Media Center Edition (XP MCE) 2005.
"Today, the dream of digital entertainment becomes a reality," Gates said. "People want to choose how and where they enjoy their digital media, and to easily customize their digital entertainment experiences. The vast array of innovative new products and services announced today from Microsoft and our partners enables them to do just that."
XP MCE 2005 customers can experience digital entertainment such as digital photos, home movies, music, television and more, all in a simple, seamless design usable with a mouse and keyboard or even a remote control. XP MCE 2005 features include:
- Ability to pause and record live TV. You can watch, pause and record up to three live TV shows* at the same time and watch them on your schedule. Recording works with any TV signal, from a basic antenna to cable, digital cable and satellite. And because Windows XP MCE 2005 is the first high-definition-ready Windows operating system, you can easily record and play back TV shows in high-definition quality. Computer manufacturers will be shipping new PCs with HDTV support by the end of this year.
- Movie Finder. You can easily find movies to record and enjoy with the new Movie Finder feature. You can browse top-rated or new releases and movies; search by categories such as actor, genre, cast and director; and even find similar movies.
- CD and DVD burning. Many Media Center PCs now feature built-in DVD and CD burning, allowing you to share pictures and home movies, burn CD mixes, archive recorded television programs, and more.** Microsoft has integrated Sonic AuthorScript, the world's leading DVD and CD burning engine, with Windows XP MCE 2005.
- Photos. You can easily transfer photos from your digital camera or USB device to your PC; crop, resize and remove red-eye automatically; and easily archive your photos to a CD or DVD.
- Enhanced desktop experience. XP MCE 2005 delivers a sleek, polished new look across the desktop -- marking the first visual design update since the launch of Windows XP -- and includes new screen savers, themes and digital media features.
- Windows Media Player 10 integration. Windows XP MCE 2005 includes Windows Media Player 10, which makes it easy for you to discover, download and play music and video from a wide range of online stores and take it anywhere on a broad range of devices.
- Windows Messenger integration. Using Windows Messenger, You can chat with friends using a keyboard or remote control, while engaged in other activities such as watching TV.
Windows XP MCE 2005 is available only on new Media Center PCs and is not available at retail or from Microsoft. Microsoft has made the software available to PC makers to distribute to previous buyers, so if you own a Windows XP MCE 2004 machine, contact your PC maker to check about the availability of XP MCE 2005. For more information see the Microsoft Upgrading to Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005 Web page.
According to this C|Net article, Microsoft also reduced the price of Windows XP MCE 2005. Previous versions where priced higher than Windows XP Professional, but MCE 2005 is priced somewhere between the price of Windows XP Home and XP Professional.
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