Microsoft Airlifts Special Shipment of ActiMates Interactive Barney

Editor’s note:
References and hyperlinks to some products have been removed since publish date due to changes in product availability.

REDMOND, Wash., Nov. 24, 1997 — To ensure an adequate retail supply of one of the hottest products of the holiday season, Microsoft Corp. today will airlift a special shipment of the ActiMates ™ early learning system. The shipment of ActiMates Interactive Barney ™ will go to retailers that have experienced spot shortages of product in recent days due to unexpectedly high consumer demand.

“While we predicted that ActiMates would be popular this holiday season, the demand at retail has been much greater than anticipated,” said Rick Thompson, vice president of the hardware division at Microsoft. “Today’s airlift will help guarantee that as much product as possible is on store shelves for the busiest shopping day of the year – the day after Thanksgiving.”

The United Parcel Service flight will take off from King County Airport in Seattle today and will travel to Newark International Airport. From there, ActiMates units are being shipped to the stores most in need.

In addition to the supply for the holiday shopping weekend, Microsoft is donating 150 ActiMates Barneys to children’s hospitals around the country to benefit young patients who will be hospitalized during the holidays. Those units are traveling on the same flight from King County Airport.

In recent weeks, retailers, industry analysts and the media have forecasted that ActiMates will be in short supply in the coming weeks. Some retailers are predicting that they may run out of the product by mid-December.

Microsoft® ActiMates is an innovative combination of products that work alone, with the personal computer or the TV (with specially encoded VHS tapes or the television show “Barney & Friends” on PBS). The system focuses on learning readiness and early learning skills to make learning fun and fascinating for preschoolers.

Designed for children ages 2 to 5, ActiMates Interactive Barney has an estimated retail price of $109.95 (U.S.). The ActiMates TV Pack and ActiMates PC Pack are approximately $64.95 (U.S.) each. Estimated retail price for PC software titles is approximately $34.95 (U.S.) each, and $14.95 (U.S.) each for videotapes.

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 and ActiMates are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries.

Barney is a trademark of the Lyons Partnership L.P.

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

Note to editors: If you are interested in viewing additional information on Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft Web page at on Microsoft’s corporate information pages.

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