Microsoft Reveals Next-Generation POSReady Platform, Availability of Windows Embedded Handheld and the Future of Digital Signage at NRF

NEW YORK — Jan. 9, 2011 —The future of the retail and hospitality industry can be seen at the National Retail Federation’s 100th Annual Convention and Expo (NRF).

Industry influencers from near and far are set to walk the halls of the Javits Convention Center in New York City in search of the latest innovations in the connected retail industry. Among the many devices being showcased, attendees can view, firsthand, the evolution of the Microsoft Windows Embedded platforms that help retailers build lasting customer relationships by connecting customers, stores and operations — including Windows Embedded POSReady, Windows Embedded Handheld and Windows Embedded Standard 7.

To equip retailers with the tools they need to deliver an exceptional experience to their customers, Microsoft will release the latest Windows Embedded Handheld technologies at NRF. Through this platform, Windows Embedded will showcase advancements that OEMs are able to utilize when creating devices that bring enhanced in-store experiences and mobility to retailers. Windows Embedded continues to help retailers keep their employees informed through connectivity to business-critical data, valuable back-end systems, improving worker productivity and increasing customer responsiveness at the point of impact.

In addition, Windows Embedded will be unveiling the latest features for Windows Embedded POSReady — optimized for point-of-sale (POS) solutions with the power of Windows for in-store devices, to transform them from transaction processing to platforms that support increased customer satisfaction, loyalty and staff productivity.

On the digital signage front, at Microsoft booth (#836), NEC’s Next Generation Digital Sign demonstration will feature the latest innovations incorporating Windows Embedded Standard 7. Some of the demonstrations will include interactive gesture control and intelligent video analytics through a virtual store environment that will be available to view on a 46’ display. This demo is just one example of how customers can interact with merchandise through a mounted camera paired with gesture controls when viewing a display.

Other key demos utilizing Windows Embedded, with a focus on retail, will also be at the show, including the latest from Retalix, Clarity Mobile, Intel, Intermec and Razorfish.

Barb Edson, senior marketing director for Microsoft’s Windows Embedded business, will also lead a Big !deas session at NRF, highlighting Microsoft’s vision to help retailers build lasting customer relationships by connecting people, processes and technologies worldwide. Attendees stopping by room 3D04 in the EXPO Hall at 3 p.m. Monday, Jan. 10 will be given a firsthand insight into the power of Microsoft’s innovative solutions for retail and hospitality, including POS, handheld terminals, self-service kiosks and digital signage.

“Throughout NRF Windows Embedded is executing on Microsoft’s vision to provide enriched in-store experiences and showcasing solutions that help retail and hospitality organizations attract and retain customers, improve profitability and accelerate growth,” Edson said. “With new specialized devices to market, Microsoft and industry partners continue to leverage the power of Windows to create an enhanced and connected retail and hospitality experience.”

Be sure to keep an eye on the Windows Embedded News Center over the next few days for additional announcements from Microsoft. Follow up-to-date event news and tweets from the NRF Show floor by following @MSFTWEB, @MSRETAIL and @RetailsBIGShow, and check out additional news at the Windows Embedded News Center and Retail Virtual Pressroom.