Microsoft Releases Windows Embedded POSReady 2009, Offering Retailers and Hospitality Organizations a Flexible and Connected Industry-Specific Operating System With Simplified Deployment

NEW YORK — Jan. 12, 2009 — Today, at the National Retail Federation (NRF) Annual Convention & Expo, Microsoft Corp. announced the availability of the latest offering from its Windows Embedded Ready product line for key device categories, Windows Embedded POSReady 2009, the next generation of Windows Embedded for Point of Service (POS). Windows Embedded POSReady 2009 is Microsoft’s embedded operating system optimized for OEMs building POS solutions and enterprises using POS devices. This next-generation POS platform is a flexible operating system designed to seamlessly connect POS solutions with peripherals, servers and services.

“In an increasingly connected world, retail and hospitality businesses need technologies that help the transition from transaction processing to enhanced customer service and relationship building,” said Ilya Bukshteyn, senior director of Windows Embedded Marketing at Microsoft. “Windows Embedded POSReady 2009 is designed specifically to help enable this transition. With Windows technologies such as Microsoft Silverlight, .NET Framework 3.5 and Windows Presentation Foundation, the platform enables a differentiated and compelling user experience that can lead to greater customer loyalty.”

In addition, the company announced strong growth momentum for Windows Embedded in the retail market. According to a recent report published by IHL Consulting Group Inc., Windows Embedded operating systems accounted for 36 percent of retail and hospitality POS shipments in North America in 2007.*

The improved flexibility of the new Windows Embedded POSReady 2009 platform will offer retailers and hospitality organizations such as Macy’s and Douglas Cosmetics that are currently running Windows Embedded for Point of Service a familiar next-generation solution that is easily deployed and remotely managed, and that provides new storage options lowering the total cost of ownership of POS devices.

“Increasing competition coupled with challenging economic conditions place further demands on organizations to implement innovative services that reduce costs and streamline operations,” said Greg Buzek, president of IHL Group. “By allowing plug-and-play connectivity with peripherals, embedded operating systems such as Windows Embedded POSReady 2009 provide the flexibility in system components and software that retailers need, allowing them to lower the cost of ownership and increase efficiencies at the front end.”

Driving Connected Experiences With New Technology Enhancements

Windows Embedded POSReady 2009 is an important building block for smart, connected, service-oriented POS solutions on devices such as cash registers, service kiosks, digital signage, cash ATMs and fuel pumps. This release offers new features, updates and enhancements that focus on three areas:

  • Flexibility. Windows Embedded POSReady 2009 offers the flexibility to customize the operating system image to suit specific hardware requirements. The platform is easy to deploy remotely and install using a selection of storage media, and it integrates with new hardware types, including Universal Serial Bus (USB) devices. OEMs and enterprises can reduce costs and increase the security of their solutions by customizing the operating system to use only the components required to meet their business needs.

  • Seamless connectivity. With built-in networking capabilities and standards-based plug-and-play support, Windows Embedded POSReady 2009 easily connects to peripherals, servers and services and works seamlessly with a broad range of retail applications, making POS solutions running on the platform simple to install, configure and manage.

  • Reliability and familiarity. The platform delivers the reliability, familiarity and manageability of the Windows operating system and supports the latest Microsoft technologies, including the Microsoft .NET Framework 3.5 with Windows Presentation Foundation, Windows Internet Explorer 7, Windows Media Player 11, Microsoft Silverlight, Microsoft SQL Server Express and Microsoft Office Viewers.

As part of the dedicated Windows Embedded community, Windows Embedded POSReady 2009 solutions are supported at every step of the development life cycle by helpful resources and more than 170 industry-leading partners and OEMs including device-makers NCR Corp., IBM Corp., Wincor Nixdorf and Fujitsu Ltd.; independent software vendors like Torex Retail Holdings Ltd., and silicon vendors Intel Corporation and Advanced Micro Devices Inc.

To request a trial download of Windows Embedded POSReady 2009 and find more information, visit http://www.POSReady.com.

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.

* IHL Consulting Group’s 2008 North American Retail & Hospitality POS studies

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