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MSN TV Seeks Seniors

Techstination feature for Wednesday, February 12, 2003

MSN TV seeks seniors. Bloomberg Boot Camp, a report on today's technology. Microsoft hasn't given up on the idea of MSN TV... formerly called WebTV. It now hopes to win subscribers to the service that puts a Web browser on TV screens... by focusing its sales efforts on senior citizens. Marketing director Sam Klepper...

"The market we are targeting essentially are seniors who do not have a computer at home. And this is quite a large market, there are over thirty million households that fit into that category. And the reason we are going after seniors is a large group of them have missed the whole Internet revolution. They are currently the largest population not online yet."

MSN TV boxes that include a wireless keyboard sell for under a hundred dollars... with monthly service starting at 9.95. It does include email and instant messaging and will hook up to certain printers. An inexpensive computer could be a better deal... allowing even those beginners to run all kinds of software and store family photos. According to a recent report from SeniorNet 46 percent of people fifty and older have been using the Internet for over five years... and three quarters of them are self taught. But for those who fear the very idea... MSN TV could be a way to get past that... .

"The whole navigation system, the user interface, is quite unlike a PC. People aren't naturally comfortable with a mouse."

You can find more information at Bloomberg Boot Camp, I'm Fred Fishkin.