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 Jan 19, 2005 - 09:00 AM - by Michael
* Media Center for Xbox

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Xbox/Xbox Games
Xbox365 have taken a look at the new media center extender add-on:

The Xbox Extender takes about twice as long as a dedicated Extender to connect to the Media Center PC and then "boot" into the Media Center environment, a period of time that can be measured in several seconds but is nonetheless annoying when you plop down on the couch and want to get started with some serious television browsing. More annoying, however, is that the actual performance of the device is worse as well: As you navigate around the Media Center UI on the Xbox, button clicks are followed by slight pauses before anything happens. The effect is like Media Center in molasses, and that's not a good thing. Dedicated Media Center Extenders just perform better.

Microsoft product Manager Tom Laemmel told me recently that the performance of the Xbox Extender shouldn't be surprising, since it's a software product that's emulating a hardware device. And he's right. But I'm curious why Microsoft didn't take the step of copying the Extender software to the Xbox hard drive during installation. It seems like it would perform a bit better. It would certainly boot up more quickly.
Nifty idea, but since the Xbox doesn't have the horsepower (or for that matter, the HD space) to really exploit this, I think it's a bit before its time.

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