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WebTv VS A Computer
A Comparison

A WebTv is an internet terminal box (about the size of a VCR) that you connect to any television set and to your phone line and then view the ordinary television or switch to the can go back and forth between them with the push of a button!!!

IMPORTANT NOTICE: As of October 2004, MSN Corp has released a new Set Top Receiver MSN TV 2 which has Broadband capabilities along with an updated Browser (comparable to Internet Explorer 6)... for more info please goto the MSN TV 2 Website

Originally back in 1998, I built this Website using ONLY a WebTv box and my TV set! I didn't even OWN a computer!... until later on...

That's testimony that a WebTv can do many things that a PC can do; at least enough to build a website like this! [see footnote]

Internet web page viewing could be easier on the eye and much more enjoyable and entertaining with a WebTv set-up than with a Computer.

Why? Because:

  • With PC's you have nearly 25% of the screen used-up with cluttered technical styled scroll bars, navigation bars and generally computer stuff info. This takes away the customary entertainment value of the screen that viewers want because they are used to seeing a full screen from their ordinary television and cable viewing experience.
  • WebTv uses an infared wireless keyboard which means you don't have to sit right in front of the screen to view the internet, like you do with a desktop computer, which is VERY annoying and tiring to say the least! Instead you can move all around the room and be comfortable while you browse the web...even lay back in bed!!! Of course a PC Laptop can do this too, especially with a wireless ISP Connection!
  • WebTv's wireless keyboard doesn't use a "mouse"!!! Instead you just use the 4 arrow buttons to scroll up or down! It's SO SIMPLE...No MOUSE...and there's NO SIDEWAYS SCROLLING...only up and down. The arrow buttons automatically go from LINK to LINK giving you a HIGHLITED YELLOW BOX around each LINK...NEVER MISSING a LINK!!! Think of how great it is not to have to use that miserable mouse!!! Of course a Laptop with mousepad is nice too!
  • Don't forget COST. A computer set-up generally runs about 1000$...WebTv with the WebTv Plus (Latest Update) with a wireless keyboard generally runs about 250$... WHAT A SAVINGS! UPDATE: You can buy them new at a B I G DISCOUNT Online
  • And Don't Forget, With WebTv All It Takes Is A Flip Of A Button And You're Back On Regular Television (Not to mention all the other "goodie" features that are BUILT IN to the WebTv Receiver...
  • In fact you can even surf the net while you watch TV thru a pop-in TV Window on screen!!!...AMAZING...
  • Another point to consider is size and PORTABILITY. A WebTv takes up about one square foot and can easily be placed on top of your TV set; where as a PC requires a whole table top of space and a chair in front of it which means you use up a significant portion of a whole room! If you want to Travel, just unplug the WebTv Box and tuck it under your arm and off you go... can't do that with a desktop PC! Of course a nice Laptop will work too!
  • Also keep in mind that with PC's you are always prompted to go out and spend more money for software programs, but with WebTv there are NO SOFTWARE PROGRAMS that you will ever need! To do various things that PC's do with software...a WebTv user simply finds an ONLINE SOURCE WEBSITE that provides the same function and uses it for FREE, with limitations sometimes... However a PC with Downloading can produce many fantastic Programs...
  • And since it's not a Computer, WebTv CANNOT get a Virus...this is impossible and a nice feature in of itself! It can however spread viruses thru Email to PC Users!
  • In addition... WebTv has a feature which if you have Call Waiting (Thru Your Phone Co) you can set it so that if you're on line and you get a call, you can receive the call WITHOUT being completely disconnected from the Internet and when you finish answering the call you just hit "Enter" and you are reconnected in a few seconds!!! Try doing that with a PC! You can if you have a PC with DSL or Cable Internet... both are Broadband and allow full use of your Phone while online and not to mention provide Lightning Fast Loading at least 10 Times faster than Dial-up Service!

So what's the answer?

I believe that soon, perhaps within 2 years to date, that WebTv style internet viewing should and will become more prevalent and more available to the general public. Perhaps as we now can purchase a television with a built-in VCR, we will be offered a television with built-in internet terminal!

IMPORTANT NOTICE: As of October 2004, MSN Corp has released a new Set Top Receiver MSN TV 2 which has Broadband capabilities along with an updated Browser (comparable to Internet Explorer 6)... for more info please goto the MSN TV 2 Website

(06/02/04) It must be pointed out that the MSNTV Receiver has no hard drive, and therefore is not capable of any software downloads...

Furthermore since the original writing of this webpage content (circa 1998) the MSNTV Corporation (Microsoft) has failed to upgrade the MSNTV Browser to compatable PC levels... currently it remains at the level of Internet Explorer 4.0, which this author feels is not sufficient to fully enjoy all that the W.W.W has to offer...

(08/16/07) It seems that MSNTV has "fallen by the way side" in this Author's opinion, and purchasing one would be a BIG waste of money... a wireless Laptop with DSL or Cable Internet should be the choice here, without a doubt!!!

(08/27/13) MSNTV will officially SHUT Down Service on 09/30/13 ... Here's their F.A.Q. about it! Good Bye ole mate...