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Linksys readies Media Center WLAN link

Stream content to TVs, hi-fi

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Linksys today updated its PC-to-TV Wi-Fi connectivity system with a version that works with its combined 802.11a and g WLAN products and Windows XP Media Center 2005, due to be launched later today.

Linksys Wireless A/G Media Center ExtenderThe Wireless A/G Media Center Extender supports both 802.11a and 802.11g wireless networks - in particular Linksys' own Wireless A/G kit, launched in September 2004 - allowing Media Center 2005-based PCs to stream music, video and still photography over the WLAN to a TV and stereo. If you're suitably cabled up, you can also use 10/100Mbps Ethernet.

The device is controlled using its own remote control and uses the TV to display its menu system. Since Microsoft expects Windows XP Media Center 2005 to be running on a home's main set, no doubt Linksys is pitching the Extender at all the other TV sets in the house. All of them can then review content held on the Media Center system.

The Wireless A/G Media Center Extender (WMCE54G) goes on sale in North America at the end of October, Linksys said, then into Europe "sometime next year", apparently. In the US, it's expected to retail for around $300. ®

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