For those who have yet to use Windows 8, you might not be aware but Windows Media Center is no longer included in Windows 8. No, it’s not gone for good either.
Microsoft instead has a special “Add Features to Windows” section where Windows Media Center is expected to arrive. For those that absolutely need the Media Center, it is finally here. The download will cost just $10 and is pretty much the same Media Center we all know, love and barely use in previous Windows versions out there.
While the decision to cut Windows Media Center from Windows 8 is old news, there are probably still a few of you that wonder WHY they did it. It was about cutting costs. I’d much rather not have Windows Media Center if it means saving a few bucks- but maybe that’s just me.
If you believe $10 is too much to spend for something that was previously free, there are actually quite a few free alternatives out there on the market. Probably one of the most popular alternatives – one I personally use – is XBMC. It’s free and has a reasonable about of downloadable options that can make it quite feature packed.
We also have an older article that covers a few other alternative media centers that you might want to check out.
Do you plan on spending the extra cash to put Windows Media Center back into Windows or will you move on to one of the alternatives?[ source ]