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Windows 8 wont support native DVD playback, Media Center explained


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Microsoft has posted up more information on how its Windows Media Center features will be incorporated into Windows 8, along with word that Media Player in Windows 8 won't play DVDs.

Windows Media Center support in Windows 8 has been something of a tricky subject for Microsoft. The company admits that Windows Media Center in Windows 7 wasn't used that much but it still has a very loyal and very vocal following. When Microsoft announced its lineup of Windows 8 SKUs, it also announced that Windows Media Center would be available, but only as an add-on.

Today, the official Windows 8 blog revealed that Windows 8 owners will be able to access and install Windows Media Center via the "Add Features to Windows 8" option in the control panel. If you have the regular Windows 8 SKU, you can choose to install the Windows 8 Pro Pack for Windows Media Center. Windows 8 Pro users will install theWindows 8 Media Center Pack. The end result is that both versions will then have the Windows 8 Pro with Media Center SKU.

The actual pricing for the Media Center packs has not been announced. However, it will allow users to have DVD playback in Media Center, along with broadcast TV recording and playback and more. The regular Windows Media Player, which will be in all versions of Windows 8, won't be able to play DVDs anymore like it can with Windows 7. Microsoft states, "For optical discs playback on new Windows 8 devices, we are going to rely on the many quality solutions on the market, which provide great experiences for both DVD and Blu-ray."

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M$ is slowing nailing their coffin.

Now what are they going to advertise? Windows 8, smooth, exclusive, no native DVD playback support. :P

Sure, you can get good media players and media center alternatives, but cmon, dropping the DVD playback support, that's like killing MPAA's 99% of business. :rofl:

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I've never used media centre as 3rd party alternatives like Total Media Theatre are light years ahead of anything MS can produce.

No great loss imho.

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I've never used media centre as 3rd party alternatives like Total Media Theatre are light years ahead of anything MS can produce.

No great loss imho.

thenonhacker's reply on the original article:

Let us stop being bitter about it, and instead, show them that the world doesn't revolve around Windows Media Center, ok?

Best FREE Alternatives for Windows Media Center:

XBMC (this is what's Boxee is based on)

http://xbmc.org/

MediaPortal - Everything else is just a media center

http://www.team-mediaportal.com/

NextPVR - A free PVR and Media Centre application for Windows

http://www.nextpvr.com/

TVersity - The leading UPnP/DLNA Media Server

http://tversity.com/

MythTV - Open Source DVR

http://www.mythtv.org/

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DVD Playback and Media Center Removed from Windows 8

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Windows 8 won’t arrive this fall with support for DVD playback, nor with the Media Center packed inside, Microsoft has officially confirmed.

At launch, the next-generation platform will bring only the Windows Media Player along, with support for content downloaded or streamed over the Internet.

However, those users who would also like to benefit from support for DVD playback, will have to add the feature after purchasing Windows 8 and will need to pay extra for it.

In a blog post authored by Bernardo Caldas in the Windows Business Group, with help from Linda Averett who leads program management for the Developer Experience team, specific info on the matter are provided.

Apparently, the amount of video content consumed from online sources such as YouTube, Hulu, Netflix, and others more has surged significantly lately, pushing the consumption of physical video back.

Combined with a significant decrease in sales of DVDs and other physical media, this trend shows that DVD & broadcast TV consumption on the PC is dropping still.

“Globally, DVD sales have declined significantly year over year and Blu-ray on PCs is losing momentum as well. Watching broadcast TV on PCs, while incredibly important for some of you, has also declined steadily,” the aforementioned blog post reads.

Thus, Microsoft decided to remove support for this media from the standard versions of Windows 8, so that the price of its platform would also remain low.

“These traditional media playback scenarios, optical media and broadcast TV, require a specialized set of decoders (and hardware) that cost a significant amount in royalties,” the company notes.

“With these decoders built into most Windows 7 editions, the industry has faced those costs broadly, regardless of whether or not a given device includes an optical drive or TV tuner.”

However, this does not mean that users will be stripped of the possibility to enjoy the feature on their PCs, but only that they will have to pay more to have it.

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“Given the changing landscape, the cost of decoder licensing, and the importance of a straight forward edition plan, we’ve decided to make Windows Media Center available to Windows 8 customers via the Add Features to Windows 8 control panel (formerly known as Windows Anytime Upgrade),” Microsoft notes.

All Windows 8 users will get a taste of the Windows Media Player, though without DVD playback support. Through the installation of Windows 8 Media Center Pack atop of Windows 8 Pro, or that of Windows 8 Pro Pack on Windows 8, customers can change that.

These packs will bring Media Center to devices, “including DVD playback (in Media Center, not in Media Player), broadcast TV recording and playback (DBV-T/S, ISDB-S/T, DMBH, and ATSC), and VOB file playback,” Microsoft explains.

For the time being, Microsoft did not offer specific info on the pricing of these packs, nor on the cost that the retail versions of Windows 8 will have attached. More on this will be unveiled closer to the availability date.

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With Microsoft no longer natively supporting DVD/Blu-ray formats, the company may be looking to lower the cost of the OS by reducing royalty payments

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Yesterday, Microsoft put up an interesting post about Media Center and Windows 8. While the post gave a lot of insight on how the application will be used with Windows 8, there is a key takeaway from the post and that is that native DVD/Blu-ray playback will not be supported.

This is a big change because if Microsoft defers to third party applications to support these formats, the company does not have to pay the royalties associated with DVD/Blu-ray.

If Microsoft is cutting out the royalty payments, is the company looking to lower the cost of entry for Windows 8? The idea is not unheard of. We have already seen Apple drastically lower the cost for its operating system and Microsoft could be looking to do the same.

Another revenue stream for Windows 8 will be the Windows Store as Microsoft will be scraping 20% off of each purchase for its own coffers. Microsoft could be hedging its bets that you will likely purchase items from the store and as such, can use that revenue to offset the cost of entry for Windows 8.

What will the final cost of the OS be? The answer to that question is still unknown, but we would be surprised if it is even a penny more than that of Windows 7. Given the strategy outlined above, we fully expect Windows 8 to cost less than Windows 7 to lower the barrier of entry to try Microsoft’s dramatically different Windows experience.

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Threads merged.

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I've never used media centre as 3rd party alternatives like Total Media Theatre are light years ahead of anything MS can produce.

No great loss imho.

Yeah, CyberLink PowerDVD 11 is awesome for DVD playback cuz it supports ur graphics cards capabilities on playback, plus among many other features (like being able to play a DVD's VIDEO_TS folder direct off hard drive!)

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Yeah, CyberLink PowerDVD 11 is awesome for DVD playback cuz it supports ur graphics cards capabilities on playback, plus among many other features (like being able to play a DVD's VIDEO_TS folder direct off hard drive!)

There's a big problem with Cyberlink. It interferes with K-Lite's codecs. If one installs Cyberlink product, specifically PowerDVD, with K-Lite already installed, the system will cause problems and even keep crashing. The reason is, instead of just keeping it's codecs to itself and it's own player, it integrates the codecs on the system level, which is not nice as powerdvd is the only player thats going to use cyberlink codecs.

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Well never used WMP or Media Center myself, but I'm sure this isn't the best marketing method for a new OS^^

but I don't like Win 8 anyway, so I don't care what they screw up ^^.

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Sounds like good news.. anyways you can always use free software for optical drives playback

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im not worried someone or a release group will have it for us broke folk :P

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LeetPirate

I don't see the big problem, how many of you actually use WMP to play DVD movies anyway? They never said the OS will not read DVD discs you know, just that WMP dvd playback feature will be a feature that is off by default. I honestly don't know why you guys are raging, all you have to do it click a few buttons if you want WMP to have native DVD playback meanwhile the majority of us still use Media Player Classic and VLC.

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Tweety.Abd

I personally have Windows Media Player removed from my computer. I use K-Lite Codec with Media Player Classic, so the news doesn't affect me. :)

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