Connecting the Dots
Sept. 07, 2010
Microsoft Windows Embedded delivers platform for home entertainment.

REDMOND, Wash. — Sept. 7, 2010 — Delivering media content to people’s living rooms is the talk of the tech industry these days. It seems nearly every big-name company is unveiling a new service or product every day. And usually when they show something new, it’s almost always in a crowded exhibit hall or through a series of demo videos, but not where people are going to use the service the most: a living room. Today, the Windows Embedded team at Microsoft is changing that.

Mark Pendergrast highlights the Better Together experiences for home entertainment made possible by Windows Embedded Standard 7 and the Windows Media Center feature.

In April, the Windows Embedded team released a demo video on the Windows Media Center feature in Windows Embedded Standard 7, to highlight how the feature can enable a brand-new realm of possibilities by letting consumers merge multimedia content from various locations, such as the Internet and broadcast TV, social media portals, and personal libraries of photos, music and videos, into a centralized home entertainment hub.

Today, Mark Pendergrast, senior product manager for Microsoft’s Windows Embedded business, shows us a real-life scenario of how original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) are able to build uniquely branded experiences on consumer-focused connected media devices (CMDs) such as set-top boxes and DVRs.

“During my time at Microsoft, it has been exciting to see the company continue to innovate and invest in Windows Media Center and now combine it with the flexibility and reliability of Windows Embedded Standard,” said Pendergrast. “We have the only software and services platform for OEMs building connected media devices that combines the best of four worlds for end users: Internet content and social media platforms; services like Netflix; personal content; and traditional broadcast TV content.”

The video below shows how a set-top box running Windows Embedded Standard 7 can be customized by the OEM to deliver a unique experience targeted at a sports fan, but OEMs can easily personalize the look and feel of Windows Media Center to meet their branding and naming and the needs of their target audience. It also demonstrates how such a device can play an integral role in the networked household, allowing consumers seamless access to all their content from multiple rooms in the home.

Windows Embedded Standard 7 benefits from being a next-generation operating system that delivers the power of Windows 7 in a componentized form for manufacturers to create advanced consumer entertainment devices, with benefits such as quicker boot time, strong codec support and power management.

The solution is based on a Windows PC architecture, which brings a familiar development and production environment for manufacturers, enabling lower development costs, quicker time to market, and better integration for the end device and other Windows-based technologies.

Stay tuned for more stories highlighting how OEMs are taking advantage of Windows Embedded Standard 7 on CMDs, and be sure to follow us on Twitter @MSFTWEB for more updates.

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