REDMOND, Wash., Oct. 8, 1997 — Microsoft Corp. and WavePhore Inc. today announced an agreement to include WavePhore’s innovative data broadcast software and service, WaveTop
™, in the Microsoft® Windows® 98 operating system. Users of Windows 98 who have PCs equipped with TV tuner boards will be able to use WaveTop to receive selected multimedia Internet content on their PC via cable television or television broadcast signals. Users will benefit from this feature because they will receive information without paying the monthly cost of having an Internet service provider or tying up their telephone line.
“WavePhore’s WaveTop is the first nationwide data broadcasting service to use the Windows 98 open broadcast architecture, which enables a new delivery pipeline to the PC,”
said Rich Tong, vice president of the personal and business systems group at Microsoft.
“Windows 98 allows users to receive WaveTop Internet content in a more cost-effective way.”
“WavePhore Inc. is proud to have this opportunity to offer WaveTop, with its diverse variety of entertainment and information, to users of Windows 98,”
said David E. Deeds, chairman, president and CEO of WavePhore.
“The open broadcast architecture of Windows 98 will allow us to bring the WaveTop software and service to millions of new users.”
WavePhore Features Well-Known Content Providers
WavePhore sends data over the broadcast signals of PBS National Datacast Inc.’s 264 PBS member stations, reaching more than 99 percent of television households in the United States. WaveTop, launching later this year, will be the first free, advertising-supported, nationwide data broadcast network delivering information, entertainment, and news for kids and adults. Several well-known content providers will have content available via WavePhore, including CBS SportsLine, PBS ONLINE, Quote.com, The Weather Channel, N2K’s Music Boulevard, BarnesandNoble.com, NECX, People, TIME, Entertainment Weekly, Money, FORTUNE and Sports Illustrated for Kids.
Microsoft Broadcast Architecture in Windows 98
The Microsoft Broadcast Architecture is a new feature of Windows 98 that enables a PC with a TV tuner board installed to receive and display television, data such as Internet information, and enhanced television programs that combine television with data related to the programs. Users of Windows 98 will also have access to a program guide that allows them to view a schedule of television shows, then instantly tune into a show for viewing on the PC.
How WaveTop Will Work in Windows 98
To enable the WaveTop service, users of Windows 98 will need a computer with a TV tuner board already built in or a low-cost TV tuner add-on card. The WaveTop software will be installed easily and automatically by Windows 98 at the same time as other Windows 98 broadcast features such as the program guide and webcasting services. WaveTop data can be received via regular television signals using an antenna or through a standard cable television hookup attached to the TV tuner board in the PC.
WaveTop works by embedding data streams into an unseen portion of existing broadcast television signals, called the vertical blanking interval (VBI), and integrating them with the Windows 98 Broadcast Architecture to provide the WaveTop content directly to a home PC. The WaveTop client software features WavePhore’s latest VBI software-decoding technology and supports the Microsoft Broadcast Architecture for Windows as well as standard Internet protocols and interfaces, such as IP and Winsock.
Windows 98, the upgrade to Windows 95, is scheduled to be available in the second quarter of 1998. Windows 98 is designed to be faster and easier to use, with full Internet integration, advanced Plug and Play and power management, and complete support for the latest hardware innovations. In addition, Windows 98 will be a great entertainment platform, delivering the ultimate gaming experience with support for DVD and television, enabling the convergence of the PC with the TV.
WavePhore Inc. (NASDAQ
), the industry leader in data broadcasting, is composed of three divisions: WavePhore Networks, WavePhore Newscast and WaveTop. WavePhore Networks provides flexible, high-speed data delivery to more than 60,000 sites worldwide. WavePhore Newscast delivers real-time, custom-filtered business news to more than 143,000 subscription-based business users across the United States, Canada and Europe.
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 and Windows are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries.
WaveTop is a trademark of WavePhore Inc.
Other product and company names herein may be trademarks of their respective owners.
Certain of the above statements regarding WavePhore constitute forward-looking statements, which may involve risks and uncertainties. Actual results could differ materially from such forward-looking statements as a result of a variety of factors, including, but not limited to, technology changes, competitive developments, industry and market acceptance of new products and services, and risk factors listed from time to time in WavePhore’s SEC filings.
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