Microsoft to Take on Apple TV at CES

Microsoft is apparently gearing up to take on the Apple TV at the Consumer Electronics Show with the introduction of Windows TV. The new product from Redmond is said to be a stripped down version of the Windows operating system with the Windows Media Center interface bolted on top, according to the Seattle Times.

Windows TV will support media streaming and remote control support, and like other Microsoft products, it will be up to third-party manufacturers to build devices based on the platform. Hints of the new platform showed up when Microsoft introduced its new embedded software products in April, 2010, and at the Intel conference a few months later in September.

According to reports, Windows TV products are expected to go on sale later in 2011 and will be priced around the US$200 mark. At twice the price of the new Apple TV, however, Microsoft’s partners may have a hard time selling to price-conscious consumers.

Company’s could potentially draw in consumers by offering features like built-in storage since the Apple TV only offers video and audio streaming and doesn’t include a hard drive.

Assuming Microsoft is ready to announce Windows TV, the company will likely do so at its keynote presentation at CES Wednesday evening. The Mac Observer will be on location with event coverage.