Graphics card and chip maker, ATI have announced they will be releasing new software, called Easyshare. It enables live TV and video recordings made on a PC equipped with an All-in-Wonder video card, to be distributed around a home network to any other PC that is equipped with ATI Radeon graphics card. The viewing PC will offer full DVR (Digital Video Recorder) functionality. The software will be available for free download from December 2003.
This move makes a lot of sense. We have long held the view that the mid to high end of the market will move to a setup with a media server located outside the lounge, say in the loft or cellar, and local playback units, be they near-silent running PC or, Digital Media Adaptor (DMA). Keeping the media servers in the lounge will not be practical for most people due to their noise and size. They will require considerable cooling, due to the large amount of processing power needed to compress the video; and fairly physically large, as they may need a number of tuner cards and hard drives in them to store content.
What will be important is the quality of the user interface and the ease of handling the library of content. We wait to see the software to see it ATI have conquered this.