So the big tech news today will likely be around Microsoft's alleged purchase of Opera, the first tabbed web browser that runs on just about every platform on the planet. So why do us TV junkies care? We care because everyone will likely overlook "Opera for Home Media". They shouldn't. Microsoft continues to join us in our home entertainment rooms with WMCE, Xboxes and Windows Media Connect. Did you forget about good old WebTV?
The way we see it, the computer is already becoming an integral part of your home entertainment space. If it hasn't yet, don't fight it because it will. Once it does, think about watching your HDTV over IP when a show host polls the broadband audience. Sure we can do that today, but you generally have to run to your notebook or desktop and then vote. Once the browser is embedded into the experience however, that makes life much simpler and the experience much richer. Think about a Voice-Enabled Electronic Program Guide for starters. Opera already has it, and now Microsoft will too.
Windows Media Center can already bring you your HDTV, either directly or indirectly through a Windows Media Extender. Let's face it: do you really want to see Internet Explorer integrated in to that gorgeous high-def set? Perhaps IE in your PIP? We didn't think so.