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Microsoft Updates MSN TV Hardware

Microsoft announced today the immediate availability of its next-generation MSN TV set-top box. RCA manufactures the new MSN TV Internet Receiver, which costs $99 and provides TV-based Internet access through a wireless keyboard or remote control. The receiver provides email, Web, and Instant Messaging (IM) functionality through a simple UI that doesn't require a full-fledged PC.

"MSN is committed to making the Web incredibly useful for every consumer," says Richard Bray, vice president of MSN. "For people who have never been on the Internet and who are looking for an inexpensive, simple way to get connected, or for more experienced Web users looking for a secondary way to get online, the MSN TV service continues to be a great solution."

Originally sold under the name WebTV, Microsoft's TV-based Internet-access devices have generally sold poorly. The latest release offers fairly low monthly rates, however, and existing MSN dial-up customers can add the device to their service as a secondary Access Point (AP). For more information, visit the MSN TV Web site.

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