Rambo, I really hate to address you directly, but I'm forced to... facts are facts.
The UltimateTV service was announced on January 6, 2001 (cite www.ultimatetv.com/pr3.asp
) and the actual receivers hit the market in March 2001. The UltimateTV project was officially shut down in January 2002.
From the June 27, 2003 issue of the Seattle Times written by Brier Dudley:
"It's the company's largest staff reduction since it folded its Ultimate TV division in California in January 2002, cutting 168 jobs."
From the January 23, 2002 issue of WindowsITPro written by Paul Thurrott:
"The division's 500 employees (based in Microsoft's Mountain View, California, campus) are being reassigned; 168 employees face layoffs unless they can find work in other parts of the company. However, the Ultimate TV hardware group is joining the Xbox team, the Ultimate TV services group is moving to the MSN TV Services Division, and the Ultimate TV software group is moving to the Microsoft TV Division.
Ultimate TV reportedly attracted fewer than 50,000 subscribers, probably because it focused solely on DirecTV satellite service rather than the wider cable TV market. At the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) earlier this month, Microsoft representatives told me that satellite TV is more aggressive about rolling out new technology and thus made a better candidate for the company's initial release. In the year since Microsoft released Ultimate TV, however, the company was unable to secure any cable contracts, which could have dramatically increased its installed base."
My comments about the length of the project refer to from introduction to shut down. I did not include development since it was not developed by Microsoft (same with WebTV).
My source, who I consider to be of the highest authority... maybe THE highest authority on this subject, is the one that hinted at the production numbers. The "fewer than 50,000 subcribers" info that was published is true, but it was not near 50,000 either. I wouldn't drag him into this foolishness since the entire project is ancient history.
Your comments about WebTV, MSN TV and MSN TV2 refer to a hardware product. My comments refer to the PEOPLE that invented, developed and programmed the product. The hardware product evolved, but the people (and group) were dumped. This was all done at Mountian View which was abandoned.
I'm not even going to bring WINK into this... it would just confuse things, but if you want to know the real technology behind UTV you need to look at WINK.
So your claims of my statements being totally false (your words not mine) seem to be totally false in themselves. I think you must be some kid wishing UTV would come back to life, but it's not going to happen. Sorry.
So let's see some FACTS! You can type on some forum all you want about things being "totally false" but I deal with facts. When things are my opinon I state so... the facts are not my opinion and they remain fact even if you don't like it.
Did you know there was a HDTV UltimateTV box developed in 2001? Do you know where that box is? What happened to the .NET software version developed? Hint, hint, all three are real and are not at Microsoft. The story is very interesting, but too long to get into here.