Everyone's probably aware that instead of being a separate product like Windows Media Center Edition 2005 (WMCE 2005) was to Windows XP, Windows Media Center (WMC) is going to come standard with Windows Vista Premium and Ultimate Editions. That means a whole lot more consumers are going to be using the media management system that us earlier-adopters have already used and loved for some time now. The guys at krunker took the new WMC in Vista Beta 2 for a ride and were impressed with the changes—more changes in some areas than others.
For the most part, WMC is still just as solid as it was in WMCE 2005, except with fancy Aero graphics. The playback screen and the popup controls look almost exactly the same as before. The difference comes in when you're viewing recorded shows—they're arranged horizontally with a preview of the show itself. The Movies section and Pictures+Videos have also gotten a horizontal arrangement upgrade. All in all, more evolutionary than revolurionary.