Joe Wilcox posts an interesting article on the problems Microsoft has had with Bundling and Vista. He highlighted that with Windows XP Media Center Edition, Media Center had it’s own identity and that now its integrated in to Vista Home Premium and Vista Ultimate it is now "invisible"

The point: Integration doesn’t need to be a problem, but Microsoft has made it one by the way it bundles features into Windows. A year ago, Media Center was a clearly identifiable Windows sub brand. Now, it’s nearly invisible. That’s too bad, because Vista Media Center is a great improvement over its predecessors.

Twelve months ago we were all heralding the fact that Media Center would be bundled with Vista and how that would raise the profile of the product. Could we have been wrong? Is Media Center Invisible now? How could Microsoft improve the marketing and branding of Media Center to raise it’s profile?

I know plenty of people with Home Premium that have not even loaded Media Center yet. In Joe’s article he points out Apple’s strategy is to bundle the application as a suite of applications rather than integrated features.

So my idea is that Microsoft could offer just one SKU of Windows Vista then ship an optional business pack for business users and a  "Home Media Suite" containing Windows Media Center, Windows Live Photo gallery, an updated Windows Movie Maker and other consumer orientated products and this would be the option offered by OEMs selling to the consumer

What do you think?

Microsoft Watch – Channel – The Problem with Bundling

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The Media Center Show Podcast

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