Media Center Wireless Keyboard from Microsoft

Microsoft Remote Keyboard MCEAs reported by C|Net:

Microsoft will offer a wireless keyboard designed for computers running the home entertainment version of the Windows operating system, the world’s largest software maker said Tuesday.

and Engadget:

Yup, it’s even got backlit buttons and an integrated touchpoint mouse, and should go for about $100; in other words, we’d totally hit it.

I had the opportunity to play around with a prototype (codenamed, “Kirk”) a few months ago. Here are my thoughts:

  • It feels good in your hands or on your lap
  • The backlit buttons are GREAT
  • It works up to 30 ft away
  • The eraserhead-style mouse works great on the rare occasion you want to use it
  • A master lock so that my kid won’t reprogram my PC banging on it! My washer/dryer/refrigerator/microwave/oven have this. All major devices designed for home living spaces should do the same.

Feedback I’m sending to the team:

  • IR is good, but BlueTooth would be even better IMO. I understand why IR, it helps keep costs lower (for PC Mfrs and consumers)
  • I would have put the green button further up on the r-hand side.
  • A small, LED-based battery meter on the underside would be ideal.

Available in September, more details here.

3 comments

  1. Dan Flippo says:

    Did any else notice that Best Buy says this is "Compatible with a Media Center PC that runs Microsoft Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005 or later and has a Windows Media Center receiver"? I wonder if this means that one must own the MS MCE 2005 Remote to use the keyboard? As a SnapStream convert, I still use my StreamZap remote.

  2. Hilary says:

    I have one of these, it is fine except it needs more programable keys vol + – and mute do not address changing you TV’s source and such.

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