I don’t get it. People are worrying about the next release of MCE – Diamond – when Emerald is what matters right now…
Because no matter what jam is promised tomorrow it’s the bread and butter we have today which will generate WAF and help people consider an MCE solution (very much a niche like the MS Tablet PC platform) over a set-top-box and PVR combo.
At the moment I can do out and get a dual-tuner STB/PVR solution and plug it into a Plasma/LCD and 5.1 (or better) speakers and have an "instant-on", 100% reliable, easy to use solution (especially if I happed to live in a country with an EPG) that doesn’t hang for random reasons or suffer all the other idiosyncrasies that sadly part of anything as sophisticated as a WinXP based solution (I wonder how much code there is in a typical MCE install that’s totally redundant)
If Emerald can’t tidy up the user experience for MCE (or at least go a long way to making it stable, slicker and smarter) then Diamond (no matter what bells’n’whistles and/or limitations it ‘offers’ in its new hardware hogging form) is going to have a much harder sell.
Here in Aus the problem certainly isn’t all at the feet of Microsoft – a lack of an EPG coupled with the very cavalier attitude towards actually adhering to schedules is enough to alienate a lot of users – driving them into the arms of BitTorrent to actually get the shows they want to see, when they want to see them….