Good news for the DIY MCE+HDTV crowd
I had an invite to last week’s dinner in Silicon Valley with Microsoft Windows boss Jim Allchin but couldn’t attend. Thomas Hawk was there, though, and according to his excellent write-up, Allchin was emphatic about the first generation of CableCard-equipped PCs. Reportedly, only “finished systems” from major OEMs (like Dell and Sony) would initially be certified by CableLabs. If true, that’s bad news for enthusiasts and small OEMs.
But hold the phone! Chris Lanier passes along a new report that offers a ray of hope. Anand Lal Shimpi told Chris:
According to my contacts at ATI, the OCUR [(Open Cable Uni-directional Receiver] device will be included as part of a “kit” that will be the box and a new PC. The PC is not certified by CableLabs in any way, instead MS publishes a minimum system configuration and the system has to meet these specs in order to be sold with the OCUR device. The OCUR device itself is the only thing that is actually certified by CableLabs.
In his CES wrap-up, Anand had a nice write-up of the ATI device, including some pictures.
I’ve currently got three PCs running Windows Media Center Edition, with two scheduled for updates to Windows Vista this year. I’ll look forward to that upgrade a lot more eagerly if it includes a way to record HDTV.