Microsoft to Unveil Google TV Competitor at CES
Maybe it should have been obvious. After all, can Microsoft refrain from competing in anything its arch-rivals Google and Apple are doing? Apparently not, as reports indicate Microsoft will announce its own set-top box for TVs at the upcoming Consumer Electronics Show.
Microsoft has a big keynote planned for CES this week, and the Seattle Times reports that one of the things Microsoft will unveil is a Windows-based set-top box that will compete with Google TV , Roku and Apple TV devices.
Anyone wanna bet it will be called Windows TV?
According to sources, Microsoft's device will run a "stripped-down version of Windows" that will cater specifically to connected TVs. It will use the familiar Media Center interface popularized in Windows 7, so many people will be instantly familiar with the controls.
The idea isn't all that far-fetched because Windows 7 Media Center already acts as a DVR and performs other functions commonly found in a set-top box. All Microsoft would need is a better search function for Internet content and a few content-provider deals to make such a device competitive with Google TV and Apple TV.
The Microsoft box is supposed to cost around $200 and be available to consumers later in 2011. There are no other details, but if the report is true, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer will give more details at his CES keynote this Wednesday evening.
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