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Apple itunes movies in France, Canada and the UK - death of Media Center?

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 5-Jun-2008 08:02

Apple has announced their on-line movie offerings in France, Canada and the UK through its iTunes store.

There you go. How long before they do the same in Australia and New Zealand?

I currently use a Mac mini in the lounge, running Windows Vista Ultimate for its Media Center. But this can be quicky changed by simply setting a Bootcamp option and instantly revert to Mac OS. Or changing the OS may not be needed at all - but all the Mac OS eye candy...

Apple TV works with Windows Vista through the iTunes applications, so people don't even need to buy a lot of new hardware - a small box is all it takes to bring movies to your lounge. Forget about Windows Vista Media Center. There's a set top box that does it nicely - music, photos, video. Apple TV may be something interesting after all.

It is very tempting to avoid trips to a video rental store and download movies directly to your home theatre, over the Internet. Bring on fuel savings!

Microsoft is too U.S. centric and all their media offerings is always only available in the U.S. Add to this the lack of interest from content providers on Windows Media Center and it is a platform that may have its days counted now.

I wrote here before. In addition to having TVNZ on demand service as a browser application the developers should have worked with Microsoft to develop a Media Center add-in allowing people to watch those videos from their Media Center interface. But no, instead we are sucked into a browser - even though Media Center PCs have no keyboards and a beautiful user interface (and experience) that is not designed for that kind of interaction.

Microsoft is currently testing "Fiji", the next interaction of its Media Center software including a more robust support for DVB-T and HDTV. New Zealand, with Norway, is one of the very few countries using the H.264 standard for HDTV broadcast.

But is "Fiji" being tested here? No, if you are based in New Zealand the "Fiji" option is not available in the Microsoft's Beta web site.

Microsoft is really leaving consumer behind. Better rethink what you are doing - and think global...

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Mauricio Freitas
Wellington
New Zealand


I live in New Zealand and my interests include mobile devices, good books, movies and food of course! 

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