Microsoft, Motorola Announce Strategic Agreement For Wireless Communications for Windows CE
LAS VEGAS, Jan. 10, 1998 — Microsoft Corp. and Motorola Inc. today announced a strategic agreement to develop products and technology enabling wireless communications to be extended within a service coverage area to any supported mobile device based on the Microsoft® Windows® CE operating system. Motorola will provide the growing family of Windows CE-based devices with integrated wireless connectivity using one-way paging services over FLEX
Protocol-based networks. Both companies will jointly develop a software protocol to enable Windows CE-based devices to receive data using FLEX technology over one-way – and eventually two-way – paging networks for both broadcast and point-to-point transmissions. Other applications and services using two-way paging technologies also will be developed.
“Microsoft’s vision is to give users the ability to access and receive information wherever they are – in the office, at home, in their car, or any mobile environment,” Microsoft Chairman and CEO Bill Gates said at the Consumer Electronics Show. “This agreement with Motorola ensures that Windows CE-based products will have a rich set of wireless connectivity solutions available to them.”
“The key requirement for any-time, any-place communications is a comprehensive foundation for wireless voice and data,” said Motorola CEO Christopher Galvin. “Our FLEX technology, along with the Windows CE platform, will give software developers a powerful set of tools to develop truly customized communications solutions and will enable the broad deployment of wireless services.”
Under the terms of the agreement, Motorola will design, manufacture and sell a set of wireless modules for Windows CE-based devices that provide paging capabilities through FLEX technology. The modules will enhance the connectivity options of these devices with wireless messages and wireless Internet and intranet connectivity (such as updates to Web site information as well as news and financial, sports and corporate information). The first modules for Windows CE are expected to be commercially available in 1998.
Microsoft and Motorola also announced that they will jointly develop training programs for customers and integrators to assist them in planning and deploying wireless solutions.
The FLEX Protocol, created by Motorola, is the global de facto standard for high-speed paging. It has been adopted by 18 of the top 20 U.S. service providers, as well as by market-leading providers in Canada, Latin America, Asia, Africa, the Middle East and Europe. The FLEX Protocol is the national standard for high-speed paging in Japan and Korea and is also a national standard in Russia. In addition, it has been adopted by China’s Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications (MPT) as its nationwide high-speed paging standard, and it is included in International Telecommunications Union (ITU) recommendations. FLEX Protocol-based operators are in all of the top 10 world’s largest paging markets. There are over 160 FLEX technology-based systems in commercial operation in more than 30 countries, which represent 92 percent of the world’s paging subscriber base. Motorola’s family of FLEX paging protocols includes FLEX one-way, ReFLEX
two-way and InFLEXion
voice transmission technologies. In addition to the protocols, the FLEX technologies include a robust product
portfolio of pagers, components, infrastructure, test equipment, application protocols and software.
Motorola (NYSE “MOT”) is one of the world’s leading providers of wireless communications, semiconductors and advanced electronic systems, components and services. Major equipment businesses include paging and data communications, cellular telephone, two-way radio, personal communications, automotive, defense and space electronics and computers. Motorola semiconductors power communication devices, computers and millions of other products. Motorola’s 1996 sales were $28 billion.
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 Windows are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries.
Motorola, FLEX, the FLEX logo, ReFLEX and InFLEXion are trademarks or registered trademarks of Motorola Inc. 1998, Motorola Inc. All rights reserved.
Note to editors: If you are interested in viewing additional information on Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft Web page at http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/ on Microsoft’s corporate information pages. Further information from Motorola’s messaging systems products group is available at (http://www.motorola.com/pagers/) . Information on FLEX technology is available on Motorola’s Web site at (http://www.motorola.com/FLEX/) .