If it can’t be tested successfully, should it nevertheless be unleashed license-free into the wide open market? That’s what the NAB is wondering after yet another test of a potential unlicensed device was halted when the device unexpectedly froze. Microsoft put out a release about a device it was testing, with this extraordinary admission: "The Microsoft device has been delivering meaningful results over several weeks but unexpectedly shut down on March 26."
Microsoft expressed its hopes that the FCC itself would continue research into how to make the technology work, saying, "The FCC has tremendous technical expertise and will continue to rely on its own substantive knowledge."
NAB Executive Vice President Dennis Wharton, noting that this is Microsoft’s third such failure, said, "In baseball, it’s three strikes and you’re out," said Wharton. "How many strikes does Microsoft get? If they can’t get the device to work in the lab, how are they going to get it to work in the real world?"
RBR/TVBR observation: Perhaps we’re oversimplifying, but isn’t Microsoft’s whine kind of like saying "Hey, I have this great idea for a perpetual motion device, and the Patent Office has tremendous technical expertise — perhaps they can help me get it to work!" The good news is that it further reduces the odds that some technophiliac bureaucrat will unleash these devices before we’ve even gotten around to debugging the DTV transition.