I've been thinking about Microsoft's quiet reorg, via which the company unified the IPTV, Media Center and HD DVD initiatives into a single organization, known as the Microsoft Connected TV business group.
"This is a step in the right direction as long as we also begin to consolidate the underlying platforms and developer technologies. Today, if you want to build a media experiences that spans devices, you are forced to use a hodgepodge of languages, tools and standards. Until we (Microsoft) realize that we need to deliver one unified platform for multimedia development and consumption, these types of changes are not going to matter much to the general consumer or customer."
As a result of the latest reshuffling, the Media Center team, which (supposedly) has been working on the next out-of-band Media Center release, codenamed "Fiji," is now part of Robbie Bach's Entertainment and Devices unit, rather than the Windows client one. So what does this mean, if anything for the development and release of Fiji?
Fiji was expected to be a set of bug fixes for Vista Media Center, plus some new features. One source described Fiji to me as "Media Center + fixes + some (Apple) iLife-compete work."
I heard recently from sources that Microsoft was going to provide a status update on Fiji real soon now -- and maybe even some code -- perhaps even at the Consumer Electronics Show in early January. Microsoft opened the Fiji beta applicant floodgates in April 2007 and has said (and delivered, as far as I've heard) nothing since then. Last anyone heard, Microsoft was unlikely to deliver the final Fiji bits before the latter half of 2008....
Entertainment and Devices Corporate VP Joe Belfiore allegedly was running the Fiji project. (But I also heard Belfiore was working on something video-related, which may or may not be part of Fiji.) All I know is Belfiore's been awfully quiet the past few months.
Given Microsoft's latest TV reorg, what kinds of features do you think might make it into Fiji? Anyone know more about what Belfiore's up to these days?