Microsoft have confirmed that they will be dropping the native DVD playback support in Windows 8 Starter and Home Editions by default, meaning you would have to upgrade to add Windows Media center to your system in order to use the various codecs required.
One solution – VLC, KMPlayer or Media Player Classic
It appears that this new modification has raised a great deal of concern amongst the Windows 8 community and so the company has attempted to address the issue with an article in the Windows 8 blog.
“The rules surrounding who pays these royalties vary by licensing program. According to the MPEG-LA program, the company that ships the end product is responsible for paying. In the case of new PCs with Windows pre-installed, that would be the PC OEMs. The Dolby program for Windows 7 was defined based on an agreement between Dolby and Microsoft where Microsoft has paid Dolby directly for the rights to Dolby Technologies built in Windows 7. Royalties are also paid by ISVs that include those technologies in their applications, even if those applications are bundled on new systems. This means that in many cases the same royalties can be paid multiple times over for a single PC (Microsoft pays some, OEM pays some, ISV pays some).”
After looking through the Microsoft Developers Blog notes, I observed that the 2012 version of Media Center will in fact be the edition that is integrated with Windows 7. Although many expected a new Metro style version, this won’t be the case with Microsoft also clarifying that what you have now is what you will get “The version of Media Center included in Windows 8 is what we shipped in the Windows 8 Consumer Preview”.
Bizarrely, if you pay for the Media Center pack, you will unable to play DVDs in Media Player.
I noticed a couple of websites are trolling this fact, and creating a bigger deal than necessary as this is not a new proposition from Microsoft, with earlier versions also requiring the full-entertainment-package as access to features, but in Windows 7’s cheaper editions, these limitations were loosened and in this atmosphere – Microsoft should be adding, not removing.
So whether or not this encourages piracy (as in pirating Windows 8’s better editions) or discourages users from upgrading to Windows 8 then only time will tell – and with a potential September 2012 release date, then already an outcry has become of the future of Windows Operating System. All hail open-source.