The new product, Media Center Edition Control Server (MCECS) acts as a bi-directional communications gateway between Microsoft Media Center software and touch panel remote control devices such as those made by Crestron, AMX, and Control 4, as well as several others which are under development. The technology will also be used with web tablets, ultra mobile touch screen PCs, and Windows SideShow devices.
The product was first announced publicly on June 6 of this year, and the company has had an overwhelming response from computer OEMs, value-added resellers, software developers, remote control manufacturers, and custom audio/video installers who have been waiting for just such a solution.
Today’s announcement means that the companies’ partners will be able to obtain production software to finalize the testing of products under development.
“The first industry to leverage the technology will be the high-end custom A/V installation market, because it’s immediately useable to professional installers using sophisticated IP enabled control systems,” said Susan Polese, company spokesperson. The software provides a rich control protocol for MCE computers, which has traditionally only been available in very expensive media servers. This capability will open a much larger market to A/V installation professionals.
“Before the end of this year, consumers will begin to see more accessible products which will feature color touch panels capable of browsing and playing their media anywhere in the house without having to walk up to a computer monitor or TV.” The first of these will likely be offered by Autonomic Controls’ OEM partners as an alternative to the current IR remote controls sold with many MCE computers.
Microsoft has been developing and enhancing their multi-media software, Windows Media Center Edition, for over three years. The product is currently distributed via a special edition of the Windows XP operating system that is typically pre-loaded on certain OEM computers. Currently, Hewlett-Packard, Dell and Sony manufacture purpose-built Media Center Edition computers, along with several boutique manufactures offering MCE computers that are designed to be more at home in the A/V cabinet.
Autonomic Controls’ solution is especially timely, considering Microsoft’s pending release of Windows Vista, which has the Media Center Edition software pre-installed. Companies who leverage Autonomic Controls’ technology will be able to rapidly deliver an innovative product to a huge potential target audience.
This technology also allows for full, two-way control of media playback on Media Center Extender products, such as XBOX 360 game consoles, and extender products made by companies such as LinkSys. This feature was frequently requested by custom A/V installers who wish to offer a multi-room audio solution to their customers.
About Autonomic Controls, Inc.
Autonomic Controls, Inc. creates technology for today and tomorrow’s digital home and business. Through the Autonomic Home product brand, the company is focused on extending the functionality of Microsoft Media Center hardware and software to provide real time interaction with control systems and remote controls that integrate with audio/video, security, environmental, and lighting devices. In addition to MCE control technology, the company provides consulting and software development services to its partners in the A/V and computer industries. Autonomic, Inc. is based in North Salem, NY. For more information on MCE Server, the Autonomic Control System or other inquiries, visit www.autonomichome.com or send e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Filed in: Home Controls