While WMC never really became hugely popular, it has a dedicated and vocal community.The user interface was clean, relatively simple, and one of Microsoft’s better UI implementations.The DVR capability let you own your own recorder with the expandable space of a PC hard drive, as well as not having to pay a fee for the electronic TV guide as either the TV providers or Ti Vo charge.
Microsoft has moved a lot of WMC-like capability into the Xbox platform.
The Xbox One will have live TV viewing capability that will support third-party, over-the-air tuners from Hauppauge and presumably others in the future.
It also offer the ability to feed cable or satellite video into the Xbox One and use Microsoft’s One Guide program guide.
Microsoft recently announced that after a dozen years, it would no longer include support for Windows Media Center (WMC) in the upcoming Windows 10.
WMC was novel when introduced as a special edition of Windows XP in 2002.
The premise was to leverage the power of PC hardware to enable an all-in-one media center, capable of playing DVDs, videos, photos and music with a 10 foot remote control interface.Perhaps the biggest feature, at a time when not everyone had a DVR, was the live TV recording functionality it offered when paired with PC TV tuner devices.Despite these improvements, the focus in home entertainment shifted to consumer electronics (CE) devices.The cost and simplicity of renting a plug-and-play DVR from the TV service providers outweighed the benefits of WMC, and streaming services starting around 2008 spread quickly to Blu-ray players and other devices that were easier to set up and maintain than a full fledged Windows PC in the living room.WMC ceased development in 2009 with the Windows 7 release.A port for Windows 8 was offered based on requests from the WMC user community, but it offered no new features.