San Francisco -- 'Windows XP' will provide home users with an easy way to set
up in-home networks that will allow them to maximize their broadband connections
while cutting truck rolls for local cable operators, Microsoft Corp. president
and chief operating officer Rick Belluzzo said.
Currently, consumers are baffled when they try to find the 'work groups'
setting necessary to link home computers. The new Windows version sets them up
automatically, and it is equipped with Ethernet cards and its own firewall
technology. Buyers who want to use XP with conventional modems will have to pay
incremental costs because it's built for broadband use, Belluzzo noted. Users
can communicate instantly over the Internet via voice and video with other XP
'Use this to drive cable modems,' Belluzzo urged cable operators at the CTAM
Summit afternoon general session here Tuesday.
XP will be launched at the end of October.
Belluzzo later told reporters Microsoft's advanced set-top boxes are rolling
out 'slower than anyone would like,' adding that the company will stay true to
its vision. But he conceded that Microsoft is in discussions with companies to
provide thin-client applications for today's digital set-tops.