Microsoft seeks new Windows Media Center testers

Microsoft seeks new Windows Media Center testers

Summary: Microsoft is in the midst of a quest for new testers for some kind of new Windows Media Center product, which may or may not be connected to "Fiji," the next version of Windows Media Center Edition (MCE).

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Microsoft is in the midst of a quest for new testers for some kind of new Windows Media Center product, which may or may not be connected to "Fiji," the next version of Windows Media Center Edition (MCE).

Late last week, Microsoft posted to its Connect private beta-tester site a "Windows Media Center Tester Application" survey, sources said. Microsoft is seeking a pool of testers for some new client-based product and is closing the tester application process this Friday, February 1, sources said.

One tester said he believes the survey is for Fiji, known these days as "MCE+1." Microsoft officials would not confirm whether the survey is aimed at lining up Fiji testers. All they'd say (via a statement from a corporate spokeswoman, was:

"We are constantly developing and testing a variety of products. Asking for customer feedback is an important part of product development, ensuring that we're moving in the right direction."

Microsoft initially sought testers for Fiji last spring. It's not clear whether any of the selected testers ever received any Fiji builds. Last anyone heard, Fiji was looking like a late 2008 deliverable.

The new MCE tester survey asks about testers' experiences with managing photos, video and music, sources said.

One survey recipient said that he found the questions about system hardware interesting.

"To me, these mean one of two things. Either Microsoft knows the new software will have higher system requirements than the current Media Center, or they are trying to determine how well the software will run on various hardware. I also found the questions on audio interesting, as they suggest that Microsoft may be trying to tweak performance in this area," he said.

Anyone out there heard anything new/more about Fiji/MCE+1? Any other thoughts/guesses about what kinds of new MCE products for which Microsoft is seeking testers?

Topics: Software, Hardware, Microsoft, Mobility, Operating Systems, Windows

About

Mary Jo has covered the tech industry for 30 years for a variety of publications and Web sites, and is a frequent guest on radio, TV and podcasts, speaking about all things Microsoft-related. She is the author of Microsoft 2.0: How Microsoft plans to stay relevant in the post-Gates era (John Wiley & Sons, 2008).

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10 comments
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  • Idea

    Microsoft should add support Games for Windows LIVE in the next version in Fiji so you actually launch games within Media Center. So you can use various functions such as play music while perfoming another tasks. Therefore add Windows Live Messenger as an Widget specifically made for Media Center that you can adjust accordingly. An widget for the various online radio stations. VOIP voice and video so you can accept incoming calls.
    1g2j
    • Good ideas, but...

      Does WMC really do widgets? The last I checked, it did no such thing.

      But nonetheless, these are pretty good ideas.
      quikboy
  • RE: Microsoft seeks new Windows Media Center testers

    The answer about hardware is quite simple. It is something Microsoft always does with smaller betas. They have specific new features that have certain requirements that need certain pieces of hardware, and they need those features to get tested. When they have a limited amount of spots, they need to make sure that the people they pick to test can actually test all the features that need testing. There is no consipiracy, it really is that simple of an answer
    cullend@...
  • RE: Microsoft seeks new Windows Media Center testers

    If they have a build that installs on PowerPC (PS3 :-) I will sign up.
    thsnielsen@...
  • RE: Microsoft seeks new Windows Media Center testers

    If they built MCE in to Vista why are they splitting it up again?

    I love it makes watching movies fun specially with Vongo movie service. Music would be better if they used WMP interface.

    I just use it for movie and for the free online tv beta since I don't have a tv tuner.
    Randalllind
  • Plug-ins already exist for some things you mention

    As far as I know, a 'Live Messenger' and 'MCE Contacts' (for VOIP) plug-ins already exist and for free I think.

    Just go to thegreenbutton.com and search the forums, I remember seeing a lot posts about these.

    The plug-ins were created with the MCE SDK.

    I haven't used either of them though, so don't take it as gospel.
    Question everything
    • My post was supposed to be a 'reply' to 'Idea' Post (nt)

      nt
      Question everything
  • They should check out second grade

    They probably already got most of the
    third graders.
    Ole Man
  • RE: Microsoft seeks new Windows Media Center testers

    I would like to be a tester
    ronron50
  • RE: Microsoft seeks new Windows Media Center testers

    Had my fill of Windows. Started with version 1.3 for DOS. Even Vista has the same problems that plagued every version of Windows. The same fixes work over and over. All MS ever did was wrap the same error in a new error message. I have one Windows machine, two Linux machines, and four Macs. I can't even remember the last time I brought up the Windows box. It's just not worth the trouble of starting up Windows any more. Why they even stay open it's a complete waste of time and effort to produce such useless and damaging software.
    gswallow