March 28, 2005 9:37 AM PST

Microsoft to rename media-player-less Windows

Microsoft will rename a product it was ordered by the European Commission to offer--a version of Windows with its media player removed.

The product, which Microsoft had wanted to be called Windows XP Reduced Media Edition, will now be known as either Windows XP Home Edition N or Windows XP Professional Edition N.

Earlier this year, Microsoft said it was working with the commission on naming options after antitrust regulators balked at the "reduced media" name. Microsoft said the name was selected by European regulators over nine other alternatives proposed by the software maker.

"We have some misgivings about the chosen name as we fear it may cause confusion," Microsoft spokeswoman Stacy Drake said on Monday. "We will adopt the commission's name in order to move forward and accelerate the pace of the implementation process."

Among other options Microsoft suggested were Windows XP Not Incorporating Windows Media Player, Windows XP/N and Windows XP/B.

In addition to challenging the name of the new Windows version, the commission has expressed concern about the degree to which Microsoft has complied with its order requiring the company to license Windows communications protocols to rivals.

26 comments

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Reduced Media Edition
That name was chosen over the alternatives of Explosive Edition and Gelded Edition.
Posted by sanenazok (3449 comments )
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Exactly!
Or Windows XP Home Edition We Hate You Anarchist And Your Alternate Choices Of Software! Edition.

Then again, it would be truth in advertising. . .
Posted by (282 comments )
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Sanen Azok's post re: March 28, 2005 media edition article
This is probably a bit off- the- subject, but I noticed that you (Sanen Azok) have the same last name as me. It is my married name...and we were always told that my husband's family came from Poland to the US and changed the spelling of the name Ejzak to Azok. We also assumed we were the only families in the US with this last name spelled this way. Where are you from? This is very, very interesting to me! Please reply to azokgroup@wwdb.org. Thanks!
Posted by (3 comments )
Link Flag
The name really doesn't matter
Nobody in their right mind will be buying that turkey anyway. THe EU proved they're a pack of idiots by insisting on a separate version of Windows without the built in media player to be sold at the same price as the version with the media player.

Which one do you think the average Joe is going to pick when given a choice?
Posted by aabcdefghij987654321 (1721 comments )
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Does it really matter?
Does it really matter what edition you choose..even if you buy the reduced media version at the same price of the full media edition, you could always d/l and install Windows Media Player 10 on the reduced media edition..personal I don't care either way...its not like they are cuting out a critical piece of software out of Win2000/Xp
Posted by Greenbeanx (35 comments )
Link Flag
The key point is...
... that MS was a flaming liar when it claimed that IE, and OE, and
Windows Media had to be 'integrated' into the OS, and they were
caught in this bald-faced lie.

They should name the 'new' version as the Windows Edition H -
for Honest. Except that MS probably can't spell 'honest'.

Maybe 'Hubris'?
Posted by Earl Benser (4310 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Perhaps...
But they are in the end key pieces of the Software. Outlook Express for most people is the only way to pickup POP3 E-Mails, they're not going to get Outlook in a hury unless they specifically get Office, and even then its got to be 2003 to make it worth it with Outlook. Windows Media Player needs to be in there because this Mr. Smith, if he gets Reduced Media is not going to know how to download Windows Media Player, or indeed even Quicktime, and is going to go and play a Media file and find it doesn't work - then pay too much to get a Technician to try and fix it, eventually putting the very Software in which the European Union made Microsoft remove. Internet Explorer again - without it in Windows there is not way even to get Firefox :D You can't download anything without Internet Explorer, and hence it is integral to the system. Even if you'd want Firefox, and Mr. Smith who has just paid out a good few Dollars to some Technician to put in the same software is not going to want the hassle.

They all have to be in at the beginning, Internet Explorer 7 has already been slated as a standalone application but it has to be in there at the beginning, just like Windows Media Player. They should be removable, and it looks like they will be but they are required in OEMs.
Posted by LordKalthorn (18 comments )
Link Flag
What matters is the point of sale...
Picture this at a computer store of your choice:
When Joe Customer asks (although they may not ask at all unless
they are told...) what the "N" means and the $7.50/hour sales
rep. says "go to Microsoft.com to get the media player" INSTEAD
of go to Realnetworks, or Apple/Quicktime, ... then it will make
no difference.
The information given at the point of sale, or notice in the box,
etc will make the difference as to which player people adopt.

IS THERE ANY "NOTICE" IN THE BOX NOTIFYING PEOPLE OF
MEDIA PLAYERS OPTIONS???
Posted by technewsjunkie (1265 comments )
Reply Link Flag
And, this would have meant something . . .
two or three years ago before people had already been using a media player for a long time and deciding which one was their favorite. Yay for the EU!

Yeah, won't change much, really. The governments continue to fight the battles they've already lost. Sad, really, when you think about it.
Posted by (282 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Most people didn't choose WMP
To say otherwise is ignorant. Most computer users just use what is placed in front of them, they had no choice, nor do they likely know of the options available to them. They 'chose' WMP because that is what comes with windows.

All the non-essential windows programs got their numbers through manipulating an illegal OS monoply, not through fair competition. Pull your head out of the sand.

If the people that buy this edition use WMP more often then not, then that is fine. You should use what you like. At least this way if they get market dominance, it was done fairly. But a fair and level playing field is what Microsoft fears the most.
Posted by Bill Dautrive (1179 comments )
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