Media Center is getting neutered in Windows 8

Microsoft made a lot of Windows Media Center fans unhappy when the company revealed earlier this year that it would only be available as a downloadable add-on for Windows 8. It made many Windows fans in general upset when Microsoft said that it would not offer DVD playback as an option for Windows 8, but it would include it as part of the Media Center add-on package.

Since that announcement, two more issues that have come up that could be a problem for fans of Windows Media Center in Windows 8. Engadget reports that according to a recent Microsoft Answers reply to a question regarding booting up directly from Media Center in Windows 8, Microsoft said that option is not available because of "new Windows OS requirements and behaviors." No other information was revealed.

Putting in support for TV tuners and remote controls for Windows 8 Media Center could be harder as well. The Digital Lifestyle reports that according to a statement from Microsoft:

The TV Tuner and Windows Media Center Remote Control and Receiver categories and tests are not included with Windows Hardware Certification Kit (HCK) because we are retiring these programs. You can use HCK to obtain a Windows 8 signed driver for these devices by passing the applicable tests. For example, if the device connects via USB, then the USB tests would appear. The tests that appear depend on the features that are detected, but there are no Windows Media Center or TV tuner tests in HCK. Original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) can use Windows 8 signed drivers as part of their pre-installation image.

While we will likely see TV tuners and remote controls that will support Windows 8, the fact that Microsoft won't offer their own HCK to officially certify them could limit a consumer's choices for both of these hardware product lines.

Sources: Engadget/The Digital Lifestyle

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