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Digital TV Reception to be Integrated on PCs

Several key factors, including initiatives by Microsoft, are stimulating the growth of PC-TV tuners, and will drive fast growth within this market, according to In-Stat.

The introduction of Microsoft Vista is likely to give a boost to the PC-TV tuner market, the high-tech market research firm says. Microsoft has been encouraging PC-TV tuner vendors to centralize their software drivers through the Windows Update program.

"The most common PC-TV tuner will enable digital terrestrial television reception and be integrated in with the PC as part of a Microsoft Vista bundle," says Chris Kissel, In-Stat analyst. "However, hybrid USB TV tuners, PC-TV tuners for free-to-air satellite TV services, and pay-TV capable tuners will have significant market shares."

It makes me wonder -- will there be a time in the foreseeable future where turning on a notebook computer will result in not only being informed of the available Wi-Fi network connections in the local area, but also the available broadcast digital TV signals? Moreover, if digital TV content is "tagged" with helpful keywords, then will we be able to selectively auto-capture new content?

If that's the case, then I can imagine that digital TV reception will likely be incorporated directly into notebook computer motherboard designs. In this scenario, standardized content metadata could be applied to significantly enhance the DVR or PVR consumer experience.

While I believe that the work of the TV-Anytime Forum may have been ahead of its time, this thought-provoking standard could resurface with newfound momentum.

In-Stat's market study found the following:

- By 2011, In-Stat anticipates that 50.8 million PC-TV tuners will be sold worldwide.

- In 2011, PC-TV tuners will represent $3.1 billion in revenues worldwide.

- For 2011, 36.9 percent of all PC-TV Tuner revenues will come from end-users in Europe and 31.9 percent will come from end-users in Asia.

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