media centers

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Media Centers: 

Media Centers T-109.7510 Research Seminar on Telecommunication Business Antti-Jussi Kangas

Contents: 

Contents Introduction Technology Possibilities and risks Vendors and strategies Conclusions

Introduction: 

Introduction Technology develops fast Digital media formats (music, video, photos) Mass storage devices for consumers Broadband connection a common good At the same time prices down ↓ A demand for electronics goods And for convergence of technologies?

Introduction: 

Introduction Electronics goods in Finnish households (modified from Tilastokeskus 2005)

Introduction: 

Introduction Media center combines technologies under a common system and user interface: Digital TV and radio CD/DVD Digital music and video (mp3,wav,MPEG,wmv) Digital photos Internet browsing Living room experience

Technology: 

Technology Technology can be divided into: Hardware Software Hardware configuration of media center (BuildMediaCenter.com 2005)

Hardware: 

Hardware Essential components: TV / radio tuner card Sound / video processing card Media readers Control devices Connectivity Output devices

Software: 

Software Commercial products and open source projects Platforms: Windows XP and Linux Important that software is compatible with hardware

Possibilities and risks: 

Possibilities and risks Different perspectives: End user Media center vendors Content providers

End users: 

End users Possibilities: The services included with one system TV watching / recording CD / DVD play / record Digital music / video play / record Internet browsing Digital media library More in future.. Risks: User must be somewhat techno-oriented Software – Hardware not 1 to 1 compatible Upgradeability? → possible ”lock-in”

Media center vendors: 

Media center vendors Possibilities: New products in their portfolio Special media center hardware (silent cases, TV tuners, remote controls..) → more revenue Risks: Have to follow current technological evolution → avoid wrong standards Co-operation between HW and SW vendors to avoid support failure

Content providers: 

Content providers Possibilities: New business models: Consumers’ digital media library Online supply for digital content (CDs, DVDs, TV series..) Risks: Availability problem Enough bandwidth? Digital Rights Management

Vendors and strategies: 

Vendors and strategies Both commercial vendors and open source developers (in software) Commercial products better supported Strategies differ between vendors Common success factors for all

Vendors (commercial): 

Vendors (commercial) Microsoft biggest with Windows XP Media Center Edition, software and OS integrated (10 million licenses by 3/2006) Apple’s Mac mini (no TV tuner support) Some others SnapStream, Meedio, SageTV

Vendors (open source): 

Vendors (open source) MediaPortal for Windows XP platform MythTV for Linux platform Mostly used by techno-oriented do-it-yourself people with home made media center PCs

Product samples: 

Product samples Meedio Pro UI MediaPortal UI Apple’s Mac mini Microsoft’s Windows Media Center Edition

Strategies: 

Strategies Commercial software vendors, especially MS, does bundling with HW producers. Apple differentiates with its brand Smaller companies offer free trial-periods and lower price with some differentiation Open source development concentrates on do-it-yourself solutions

Success factors: 

Success factors Usability! No new technologies involved, old ones combined for usable living room experience Services must have quality (good user experience) Upgradeability with new technology Compatibility and connectivity with standards and devices Price

Conclusions: 

Conclusions There seems to be a demand Media center sales have grown (MCE exceeded XP standard edition in sales in 2/2006) Many software and hardware producers Segmentation by average-users (easy usability) and advanced user (home made solutions) Success factors will most likely affect Killer application / service could set it really moving Finally customers decide

Thank you! Any questions?: 

Thank you! Any questions?

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