Bill Gates is to reveal new software today at the annual US cable industry meeting. The package will be called "Microsoft TV Foundation", and is an attempt to get a stronger foothold in cable TV.

Marketing director of Microsoft's TV division, Ed Graczyk, said: "This is a big milestone for Microsoft TV. We're hoping this is an announcement that gets the industry excited."

Microsoft attempted a break into the cable market in 1999, but AT&T rejected the software after the trial proved too expensive. Sean Badding, from the Carmel Group said of Microsoft: "They want to dominate the cable industry."