HP claims conditions not right for its Media Center

HP has confirmed that its Media Center PC will not be available in the Middle East for the foreseeable future due to the fragmented nature of the region’s media.

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By  Andrew Picken Published  January 14, 2004

HP has confirmed that its Media Center PC will not be available in the Middle East for the foreseeable future due to the fragmented nature of the region’s media. The HP Media Center is a desktop PC designed to be a hub for home entertainment with the ultimate aim of making the PC an integral part of consumers living rooms. “An interesting part of the Media Center is the hook up between the PC and the content, in terms of video and audio,” explained Thomas Greve, desktops and workstations category manager, Personal Systems Group, HP Middle East. “We have implemented the Media Center in the USA, UK and France. In those countries we have gone to the radio and TV stations to create a link so that when you buy the PC, you can automatically download listings, [then] use your PC to pre-record.” “One of the limiting factors of taking these products into this region is that there is many small countries, so the media is scattered all over the place. Also, today there is no Arabic version of the software available.” Intel yesterday issued a challenge for PC manufacturers to develop entertainment based PCs for the Middle East. “Intel provides the silicon building blocks to develop and manufacture entertainment PCs,” said Tanguy de la Horie, Intel's marketing manager for the Middle East Turkey and Africa region. “Whether and when these products will be available in the Middle East is up to the PC manufacturers.” “To all intents and purposes you could take that operating system and load it onto any PC and then go and do the leg work yourself but for HP that is not a true consumer experience. For us it is important that a customer gets a product, connects it and it works,” added Greve.

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