That's ATSC feeds, or OTA ATSC feeds. Whatever you wanna call them. ATSC is the standard used to transmit over-the-air in all of North America. Microsoft disabled that feature for us Canadians, even though we use the exact same broadcasting standards (we're supposed to be fully switched to digital by now too). Nice of them, isn't it? We have to resort to rather elaborate tricks for it to work at all, and there's no program guide for my local channels either. I wonder what other countries Microsoft has been locked from having OTA reception besides us. So yes, if I took that away from you *and* CableCARD, now you'd know what it's like in other countries I believe you now fully understand why most of us don't use it. OTA ATSC feeds work fine in basically all programs except media center (and they typically record in more "standard" formats too)
That is unbelievable! Why on Earth would they do such a thing?
Don't get me wrong, it's not that I think you're providing inaccurate information, not at all -- it's that it's hard to understand why they would cripple their own product that way. Amazing. Maybe there's some underlying regulatory or licensing issue going on, but then you'd think those issues would apply equally to the other DVR-like applications that you allude to...
MS has been citing low WMC usage metrics. If the percentages include data from around the world, then it's no wonder they look so low: only people in one country can really use it.