Wednesday, August 11, 2004

Portable Windows Media Center Edition devices

I something think and wonder what would happen if I had an eye for design. Would I be able to draw? Would I think up neat web template ideas? Would I be able to turn this (some will say this is old news but I was re-inspired):



into this?




The first picture is an earlier prototype and the second one is a redesigned version of iRiver's new Portable Media Center device. Portable Media Center devices are Microsoft's attempt to dominate even more of the consumer electronics market, a relatively new one at that. Although I don't think I would carry another device in my pocket in addition to my phone and Pocket PC (made by Microsoft I might add), but it goes without saying that I thought the new design was really fantastic. It looks sturdy and pocket-safe —almost XBox and toy-like. I guess in that light it looks quite 'Microsoft'.

It runs Windows CE and has the same interface as its Windows XP: Media Center Editions computers. Unfortunately, it seems to do everything but let you watch live TV. The iRiver does have a radio tuner, though. Although it does have a built in hard drive, it doesn't necessarily compete with the iPod, because it's a whole different device with a different purpose.

I read that Steve Jobs was talking about the speculation that a future iPod would have a color screen and play videos. Steve wasn't so sure that would be a good idea. He talked about how people listen to iPod (notice the lack of a definite article) when they live out different parts of the very cool lives. These include active tasks such as working out, running, driving, relaxing, as well as the docile tasks such as sitting, waiting, commuting. When people watch movies or TV, they do just that and become absorbed in doing it. But cool, sociable, and often sedentary people will find a use for the TV-out capabilities of these devices to output to a big TV.

SOURCES: Engadget.com and Ascii24.com

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