REDMOND, Wash., Jan. 6, 1997 — Intel Corp., Microsoft Corp. and Toshiba America Information Systems Inc. today announced the publication of an open specification to bring easy, flexible power management to a broad array of PCs, including servers, business systems, computer desktops and laptops.
The new specification – the Advanced Configuration and Power Interface (ACPI) version 1.0 – enables PCs to come on instantly when accessed by a user and to remain available to perform automated tasks after they are turned off. ACPI enhances power management in PCs to provide a low-power sleeping state that can be used instead of turning the PC off. The specification also enables PCs to turn on and off peripherals such as CD-ROMs, network cards, hard disk drives and printers, as well as consumer electronics connected to a PC, such as VCRs, televisions, phones and stereos. Using ACPI, connected devices in turn will be able to activate PCs, making it easier for users to perform automated tasks and to integrate computers into home communications and entertainment centers.
The new specification was proposed and led by Intel Corp., Microsoft Corp. and Toshiba America Information Systems Inc. Since the draft proposal was announced at the Windows(r) Hardware Engineering Conference (WinHEC) 96, more than 70 companies have participated in developing the specification, attending two industry reviews and supplying feedback. Those companies include leading PC manufacturers Acer America Corp., Compaq Computer Corp., Dell Computer Corp., Digital Equipment Corp., Hewlett-Packard Co. and Packard Bell NEC, as well as component providers National Semiconductor Corp., Phoenix Technologies Ltd., SystemSoft Corp. and VIA Technologies Inc. For an extensive list of supporters, see the attached list.
ACPI is the foundation of the Microsoft(r) OnNow initiative. Desktop and mobile PCs, PC products and operating systems that incorporate ACPI are expected to be available in the second half of 1997 from a broad range of vendors, according to the participating companies.
“ACPI is the latest example of the new opportunities that exist to expand the usefulness of PCs in entirely new ways,” said Moshe Dunie, vice president, Windows operating systems division at Microsoft. “ACPI will enable robust, effective power management throughout the Windows and Windows NT(r) operating systems.” “The benefits of increased power management are apparent in the mobile segment, but what ACPI will bring to desktops is a higher level of user experience that hasn’t been seen before, making them react more like consumer electronics devices,” said Stephen Nachtsheim, vice president and general manager, mobile and handheld products group at Intel. “Intel will enable the hardware piece of this major advance in PC power management in our next version of desktop and mobile chip sets, future processors and OEM system products.”
“Toshiba is committed to offering leading-edge PC systems that are tremendously easy and useful for both business and consumer users,” said James Mason, director of architecture at Toshiba computer systems group. “Our leadership with Intel and Microsoft in the ACPI specification demonstrates that commitment.”
The ACPI specification is cross-platform, designed to support future versions of Microsoft Windows, Windows NT and other operating systems. It defines a flexible and abstract hardware interface that gives designers a way to integrate power-management features throughout a PC system, including hardware, operating system and application software.
ACPI specifies a register-level interface to core power-management functions and a descriptive interface for additional system-specific hardware features. This gives system designers the ability to implement power-management features with different hardware designs while using the same operating system driver, improving integration, increasing effectiveness and simplifying implementation.
Through the operating system, ACPI enables enhanced power management and also allows for much more robust system configuration capabilities than were previously available. ACPI also provides improved device configuration capabilities for dynamic Plug and Play activities such as mobile docking.
ACPI is fully compatible with existing power management and configuration interfaces while providing a processor architecture- and operating system-independent implementation.
The complete ACPI version 1.0 specification is available now without charge (other than connect-time charges, if any) from the ACPI Web site at .
Intel, the world’s largest chip maker, is also a leading manufacturer of personal computer, networking and communications products. Through innovative technologies, Intel is committed to improving the Internet experience for PC consumers. Additional information is available at www.intel.com.
Toshiba continues to be the leading vendor in the U.S. market for portable computers, with 27.4 percent market share based on third-quarter 1996 estimates from International Data Corp. (IDC). The company offers portable and desktop computing solutions for consumer and business customers under the Toshiba name. For dealer referral and product literature, call (800) 334-3445, or visit the company’s World Wide Web site at .
Headquartered in Irvine, Calif., with approximate annual sales of $4 billion, Toshiba America Information Systems Inc. (TAIS) is composed of nine divisions that manufacture and market a wide range of business and information-oriented products in the United States. Products include portable computers, disk drives, plain-paper copiers, facsimile systems, voice mail systems, digital key telephones, toner products, optical fiber modems and digital cameras.
TAIS is an independent operating company owned by Toshiba America Inc., a subsidiary of the $53 billion Toshiba Corp., the fifth-largest electronics and electrical equipment manufacturer and the world’s 32nd-largest corporation in terms of sales. Toshiba Corp. is a world leader in high-technology products, with 173 major consolidated subsidiaries worldwide.
Founded in 1975, Microsoft (NASDAQ
) 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 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.
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List of ACPI Supporters Acer America Corp.
American Megatrends Inc.
Award Software International Inc.
Chips & Technologies
Compaq Computer Corp.
Dell Computer Corp.
Digital Equipment Corp.
Gateway 2000 Inc.
Integrated Technologies Inc.
Mentor ARC Inc.
Microid Research Inc. & Unicore Software Inc.
Mitsubishi PC Division
National Semiconductor Corp.
Phoenix Technologies, Ltd.
Via Technologies Inc.