Viiv details revealed

Viiv details revealed

Dan Ackerman Editorial Director / Computers and Gaming
Dan Ackerman leads CNET's coverage of computers and gaming hardware. A New York native and former radio DJ, he's also a regular TV talking head and the author of "The Tetris Effect" (Hachette/PublicAffairs), a non-fiction gaming and business history book that has earned rave reviews from the New York Times, Fortune, LA Review of Books, and many other publications. "Upends the standard Silicon Valley, Steve Jobs/Mark Zuckerberg technology-creation myth... the story shines." -- The New York Times
Expertise I've been testing and reviewing computer and gaming hardware for over 20 years, covering every console launch since the Dreamcast and every MacBook...ever. Credentials
  • Author of the award-winning, NY Times-reviewed nonfiction book The Tetris Effect; Longtime consumer technology expert for CBS Mornings
Dan Ackerman
2 min read
Intel held a press conference this morning to further explain its new Viiv platform, a combination of software and hardware designed to provide a rich multimedia experience for users. We didn't learn too many new details today, and most of the basic facts about the platform were already widely known.

The requirements include a dual-core Intel processor paired with the 945 or 955 chipset, support for 5.1 or better audio, and the latest version of the Windows Media Center operating system. We expect to see actual Viiv systems on hand at next month's CES show in Las Vegas.

A lot of the interest from attendees this morning was in the plans for DRM schemes, content partnerships, and integrating new features, such as digital cable via CableCard. Details were not forthcoming on these topics, but a lot of general information is already available about the partners who will help Intel sell the platform to the public through on-demand, Internet-delivered digital content, including Sky Broadcasting, Movielink, Canal+, Napster, VirginMega, Capcom, Square Enix, and Adobe.

Digging around the Viiv Web site, we ran across a curiously pointless Flash game. It's a basic rock-paper-scissors game, where you, "get your chance by battling the computer for the power to change your TV, your living room, and your digital universe." If you beat the computer (I'd go heavy on "paper" if I were you), you're rewarded with a chance to sign up for the Viiv mailing list and get a message saying, "20 days until launch," which we counted out to be January 2. Make of that what you will.