Vista enthusiasts will already know the Windows Media Center viewing and recording suite will be included on all higher-end copies of Vista. No longer a separate SKU, Media Center is now ready for a mass market audience – and so is its remote. And just like all mass market technology, its streamlined and made easier to use.
Compared to the old Media Center remotes, the new Vista remote has most of the buttons intact: number pad, stop, play, volume and channel keys are all there. The four colored keys at the bottom will most likely correspond to the “Recorded TV, Guide, LiveTV and DVD Menu” options present on the MCE2005 remote. We love the older remote, but having these menu keys on the very bottom of the remote seems unwieldy. It’s good that they placed the volume, navigation, and playback controls near the middle where your thumb sits, but those four important keys need to be moved up higher.
Nevertheless, the remote features square corners which reportedly is as easy to hold as the old remote. We’re looking forward to testing it out ourselves.