Living Room Battle - Open Networks will thrive

Thomas Hawk and team at eHomeUpgrade have a nice summary of this fantastic piece from Barron's on the impending industry battle for the digital living room, including a substantial focus on Microsoft's multiple efforts in this space.  While the article does not clearly articulate the issue this way, it strikes us as clear that the battle is as much about open platforms and networks versus closed platforms and networks, which is the essential battle that the Internet has been fighting over and over for 20+ years, and always wins.  The essential drivers for this continue to be the same:  innovation happens much faster where content publishing is unencumbered, where content is freed of device-specific dependencies, and where there are relatively open formats and devices that support those formats.  The reality is that the current architecture and economic-basis for the cable industry is built on an end-to-end proprietary physical infrastructure that starts in an operators physical plant and end's at a closed set-top box device.