Microsoft Unveils Microsoft Internet Explorer 3.0 for Windows 3.1

Provides Compelling Upgrade for Users of Netscape Navigator and First-Time Web Surfers

NEW YORK, Dec. 9, 1996 — Microsoft Corp. today announced the worldwide, free availability of Microsoft(r) Internet Explorer 3.0 for the Windows(r) operating system version 3.1. This release delivers on the huge demand from end users, IS managers and developers for the ease of use, access to content, and rich feature set they’ve been waiting for in a Windows 3.1-based browser. Microsoft is celebrating the launch of Microsoft Internet Explorer 3.0 for Windows 3.1 with the Make the Switch giveaway, including cash and prizes for users who download the new version (the promotion runs until Jan. 10, 1997).

Best-of-Breed Web Browsing Microsoft Internet Explorer 3.0 provides users of Windows 3.1 the richest way to surf the Web. The following key features are included: * Better performance, smaller footprint. Microsoft Internet Explorer 3.0 runs on PCs with 386 and higher processors and as little as 4 MB of RAM. The new Fast Startup reduces load time, and support for fast page rendering, graphic place holders and smart caching make browsing the Web faster than ever.

* Unique ease of use and customization. Microsoft Internet Explorer 3.0 sports the same award-winning interface as Microsoft Internet Explorer 3.0 for Windows 95 and offers unparalleled customization. And the Internet Connection Wizard makes connecting to the Internet virtually effortless. * Unmatched access to the widest range of Web content. Microsoft Internet Explorer 3.0 includes support for HTML 2.0, frames, enhanced frames, enhanced tables, ActiveXTM Scripting (including the Visual Basic(r) programming system, Scripting Edition; and JScript(tm) development software, Microsoft’s implementation of JavaScript), and Netscape Plug-ins. * Better security. Microsoft Internet Explorer is the only browser for Windows 3.1 to include support for the latest in secure communication technologies, including SSL 2.0, SSL 3.0, PCT 1.0 and Windows NT(r) operating system authentication. Microsoft Internet Explorer 3.0 for Windows 3.1 can warn users when they are about to use an unsecured connection and can check a Web server’s security certificate.

“We’ve brought the Internet to Windows 3.1 in a way no one else has – with the speed, advanced content viewing capabilities, and the ease of use users expect from Internet Explorer,” said Brad Chase, vice president of marketing, Internet client and collaboration division at Microsoft. “It’s the upgrade Netscape Navigator users have been asking us for.”

Easy Upgrade From Navigator; Great for First Time Users Microsoft Internet Explorer for Windows 3.1 is compatible with Navigator and takes the lead in ease of use and content viewing capabilities. Users can easily resize and move the Microsoft Internet Explorer toolbar, and place favorite sites directly on the QuickLinks bar for single-click access. Users can even choose their own start and search pages as well as manage their favorites in one convenient location. The added bonuses of compatibility with Netscape Plug-ins, the latest in scripting technology, and enhanced HTML viewing features make Microsoft Internet Explorer an easy upgrade for Navigator users.

For users new to the Internet, Microsoft Internet Explorer 3.0 for Windows 3.1 makes connecting fast and easy with the Internet Connection Wizard. Microsoft’s Wizard technology takes users step-by-step through the process of configuring their machine for Internet access and locating an Internet service provider. And Microsoft Internet Explorer includes a TCP/IP protocol stack and dialer, providing LAN and remote users everything they need to make the Internet connection with no extra software to purchase.

Now Corporations Can Standardize Corporations have been waiting for a best-of-breed browser solution for Windows 3.1. With Microsoft Internet Explorer 3.0, IS managers now have that solution. Key features for corporate IS managers include the following: * Easy migration. Microsoft Internet Explorer runs on 386 machines and higher with 4 MB of RAM, allowing corporations to continue to use older machines in their intranets without having to buy new hardware and software or sacrificing the features they need. Microsoft Internet Explorer is available for all popular computing platforms, including Windows 3.1, Macintosh, Windows 95 and Windows NT. Versions for UNIX are under development.

* Easy administration. Corporate IS organizations can customize and automate their installation of Microsoft Internet Explorer 3.0 for Windows 3.1 with the Microsoft Internet Explorer Administration Kit (IEAK). Options such as default installation directory, start and search pages, customized logo, proxy server and security settings can all be preconfigured for users. Once installed, the IEAK allows centralized control over installations and changes. * Platform for Internet development. With support for HTML, ActiveX Scripting, Netscape Plug-ins and more, Microsoft Internet Explorer 3.0 supports the key standards corporations need to develop powerful intranet applications and content. * Low cost. A similar user interface across platforms reduces training costs and makes Web browsing easier for users. All versions of Microsoft Internet Explorer are available at no charge, with no licensing fees. Corporations are rapidly moving to Microsoft Internet Explorer. Following last week’s announcement that Arthur Andersen, Sprint PCS and Compaq Computer Corp. chose Microsoft Internet Explorer 3.0, Baltimore Gas and Electric Co. has also chosen Microsoft Internet Explorer 3.0 for Windows 3.1 as the browser for its corporate intranet, dubbed Route 96. “We’re actively deploying Microsoft Internet Explorer 3.0 to our users today,” said Joseph Hunter, manager of information systems at Baltimore Gas and Electric. “Maintaining strong, open, internal communications is important in a competitive environment. We want to ensure up-to-date information is available to our decision makers, and Route 96 with Microsoft Internet Explorer makes this possible.” Route 96 serves 5,500 Baltimore Gas and Electric employees by providing them with links to up-to-date information from more than 15 of the internal departments.

“Make the Switch” and Win! Users who download Microsoft Internet Explorer 3.0 for Windows 3.1 by Jan. 10, 1997, can register to win free prizes including a Collector’s Edition copy of Windows 3.1 autographed by Bill Gates along with a Micron Millenia laptop, as well as 20 US Robotics 33.6 Kbps modems. In addition, to commemorate the 1992 launch of Microsoft Windows 3.1, Microsoft is giving away prizes including $1,992 in cash, 92 copies of Microsoft Arcade, 92 copies of Microsoft Flight Simulator, and 92 Microsoft Internet Explorer 3.0 shirts. Microsoft Internet Explorer 3.0 for Windows 3.1 is available now for free download from the Microsoft Web site at http://www.microsoft.com/ie/ (connect-time charges may apply). Customers can obtain the IEAK for free ($20 shipping and handling charge applies) by completing the online request form at http://www.microsoft.com/ie/ieak/ (connect-time charges may apply).

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (NASDAQ “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software for personal computers. The company offers a wide range of products and services for business and personal use, each designed with the mission of making it easier and more enjoyable for people to take advantage of the full power of personal computing every day.

Microsoft, Windows, ActiveX, Visual Basic, JScript and Windows NT are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries.

Other product and company names herein may be trademarks of their respective owners.

For more information, press only: Jerry Dale, Waggener Edstrom, (503) 443-7000, jerryd@wagged.com Erin Cox, Waggener Edstrom, (503) 443-7000, erinc@wagged.com For online product information: Microsoft Internet Explorer Web page: http://www.microsoft.com/ie/ Note to editors: If you are interested in viewing additional information on Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft Web page at http://microsoft.com/presspass/ on Microsoft’s corporate information pages.

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