Microsoft Puts Windows and Media at the Center of Our Lives

Editor’s note:
Anyone interested in being among the first to have a free Windows Embedded Standard 7 evaluation kit can receive additional information and place an order


. The platform should be available for download in the next few days.

REDMOND, Wash. — April 27, 2010 —Have you ever had that moment where you look at your latest connected media device, such as your cable company’s set-top box (STB), DVR, television or even Blu-ray player, and think the content and user experience can’t get any better than it already is? It’s something we all come to do at some point, and look back years later and laugh.

As technology advances, devices connecting directly to the Internet are becoming the standard, leaving traditional “dumb” devices buried in the closet. During Kevin Dallas’ keynote at the Embedded Software Conference (ESC) Silicon Valley in San Jose on April 27, 2010, Microsoft unveiled the release to manufacturing (RTM) of the Windows 7-based Windows Embedded Standard 7 with the Windows Media Center feature, which takes this trend to the next level.

Windows Embedded Standard 7 delivers the power, familiarity and reliability of the Windows 7 operating system in a highly customizable and componentized form. There has already been tremendous demand from the market following the Windows Embedded Standard 7 release candidate (RC), and many enterprise partners and customers have plans to begin shipping products and solutions for a variety of specialized devices built on the Windows Embedded Standard 7 platform, including Beckhoff, Heber, HP, Siemens and Strong Union. Developers have the opportunity to utilize the same skills and tools they’ve already established with Windows 7 and Visual Studio to tap into this potentially huge new market by developing and servicing the next growth engine for commercial customers.

On the consumer side, the new Windows Media Center feature opens up a brand new realm of possibilities by letting consumers merge multimedia content from various locations, such as the Internet and broadcast TV, social media portals, and personal libraries of photos, music and videos, into a centralized home entertainment hub. It can certainly make family reunions or dinner parties a lot more interesting.

Original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) can leverage this opportunity through Windows Embedded Standard 7 to create branded, one-of-a-kind user experiences. Think about it — wouldn’t it be remarkable for your Blu-ray or streaming media player to connect to a Windows-based PC, a server or online services?



April 26, 2010
ESC Silicon Valley 2010

During Dallas’ keynote address, he showcased Windows Embedded Standard 7 and Windows Media Center for connected media experiences, including TV and DVR functionality, integration of media available in personal libraries (digital movies, music and photos), seamless access to streaming media (e.g., Netflix), and connected devices (Zune HD, Home Server and PCs). It one thing to read about it, and a whole other to actually see it in action!

See a demo of the Windows Media Center features in Windows Embedded Standard 7.

This announcement also benefits service providers such as cable, telecommunications and satellite operators — they’ll now have opportunities for over-the-top (OTT) content, additional services and applications to be delivered directly to consumers through next-generation devices.

A series of technical white papers is being released today to help OEMs, partners and the entire developer community begin leveraging Windows Embedded Standard 7. These resources can be found here.

With all this excitement, we want to make sure you’re a part of it. Keep an eye on the @msftweb Twitter account for real-time updates throughout ESC Silicon Valley and in the days, weeks and months ahead.