Microsoft Introduces New Service-Focused E-Commerce Web Site for Office 97 Customers

Microsoft Introduces New Service-Focused E-Commerce Web Site For Office 97 Customers

REDMOND, Wash., Jan. 28, 1998 — Microsoft Corp. today announced the Office Update Web site – a comprehensive free resource for Microsoft® Office 97 customers providing new tools, user-designed help files, interactive tutorials and the latest news about Office 97 at http://www.microsoft.com/office/ (connect-time charges may apply). Office Update sets a new standard for service-based electronic commerce by moving beyond mere promotion and transaction-based e-commerce to a free postsales service model, and by encouraging customers to shape the content of the site. Office 97 customers will have access to updated help files, new downloads, and information on Office, updated weekly, incorporating customer feedback. In addition, Office Update is the first Web site that implements Office 97’s breakthrough natural-language search technology, allowing customers to get the information and tools they want by asking questions in plain English.

Built-In Intelligence Makes the Difference

The Office Update Web site has built-in intelligence to enhance the user experience with “personalized” views that automatically remember the name and profile information with which customers register during their first visit. The site uses a search engine that actually understands user questions and is based on the same natural-language technology that appears in the Office Assistant, which is a part of Office 97 today. This Web-based search allows customers to get better results and to ask their question in everyday language so they can quickly find answers without requiring exact computer terminology or the use of complex “and” and “or” search statements.

Office Update takes advantage of direct links built into Office 97 applications that intelligently guide customers to further assistance on the Web, like updated easy-to-understand help files and references to more in-depth technical articles.

“No other software product offers customers an equivalent ‘beyond-the-box’ product experience,” said John Zagula, director of marketing communications, desktop applications division at Microsoft. “Office Update is the first step in our ongoing commitment to extend and personalize Office on the Web for our customers, while also opening the door for customers to tell us what they want to see.”

Get the Most Out of Office 97

With over 4,000 pages of resources, the Office Update Web site provides customers with a wide variety of extended tools and information to enhance their productivity when using Office. A few of the new tools and benefits, scheduled to be available within the next few weeks exclusively for registered Office 97 users, include the following:

  • Rocky the Office Assistant. Following great customer response to Earl the cat, the latest Office Assistant, Rocky, is a cheerful, eager-to-please animated dog.

  • Kurzweil VoiceCommands for Word 97. A special 60-day trial from L & H lets customers automate routine tasks and boost productivity with the use of voice-activated commands in Word 97.

  • Word and Outlook

    ™

    automated calendar template.
    The automated calendar template creates calendars for the Outlook 97 messaging and collaboration client in Word 97 and enables the use of Word features to customize or edit the calendar.

  • Microsoft Access 97 Command Bar Wizard. Walks users through the process of creating a custom toolbar in minutes.

  • 3-D rotation for PowerPoint
    ®
    . Allows greater control when users rotate three-dimensional objects in PowerPoint presentations by rotating in 1-degree increments.

  • Interactive tutorials. One free Office 97 online course offered by ZD University, a unit of Ziff-Davis Education.

Office Update sets a new standard for delivering a beyond-the-box value to existing customers with online help, additional tools and online tutorials that help customers get the most out of Office 97.

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, Outlook and PowerPoint 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:

Ann Irwin, Waggener Edstrom, (503) 443-7000, airwin@wagged.com

For online product information:

Microsoft Office Web site: http://www.microsoft.com/office/

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