Friday, September 24, 2021

WEB TV TO SHUT DOWN

July 8, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

When it was launched in 1996, Web TV was seen as a cheap alternative to owning a personal computer. For about $350 plus an additional $19.95 per month, subscribers to the service could connect a settop box to their TV set and dial-up telephone line and be able to browse the Internet and send and receive emails (with an @webtv.com address). The service attracted 150,000 subscribers in its first year, 325,000 by its second year and 800,000 by its third. In 1997 it was sold to Microsoft for $425 million and in 2001 it was rebranded MSN TV. But with the proliferation of cheap computers, smartphones and tablets in recent years, it became increasingly obsolete and last week Microsoft informed its remaining subscribers that the service will be terminated on September 30, explaining that there are now “many new ways to access the Internet.” Microsoft said that it will provide free dial-up Internet service to subscribers until the end of the year — but to use it, they’ll have to buy a computer.