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|CED in the History of Media Technology|
In October 1996, the WebTV internet appliance, which uses an ordinary television as a display device, was launched by WebTV Networks Inc. in conjunction with Philips Magnavox. The initial model was the Philips Magnavox MAT960 (upper left) priced at $329.95, which was soon followed by the Sony INT-W100. The service was priced at $19.95 per month with unlimited access. This device was targeted at households wanting internet access but which did not have or wish to purchase a personal computer. WebTV estimated 40 million households would soon adopt the system, but growth leveled out at about one million households. Microsoft acquired the company in 1997.