Europe Says “Bienvenue” to Windows CE

PARIS — More than two dozen OEM partners joined Microsoft executives from Europe and the United States today for a Pan-European Windows CE “Strategy Day.” The purpose of the event was to brief customers and the media on the growing number of exciting new products and applications being designed and built for the newest member of the Windows platform family. More than 110 reporters from 10 countries heard key briefings about Microsoft’s strategy for Windows CE from visiting U.S. executives Bob Herbold and Harel Kodesh, as well as Michel Lacombe, president of Microsoft Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA)..

Andreas Barth, senior vice president EMEA of Compaq Computer Corp., joined the Microsoft executives to announce Compaq’s exciting new line of PC companion devices, which he called the “first professional handheld PC.” Barth also emphasized Compaq’s intention to “develop new form factors” based on Windows CE. “We understand that one size does not fit all,” Barth told the Pan-European audience in the French capital.

PSA Peugeot Citroen, a French carmaker and Microsoft France partner, exhibited a prototype of the exciting Auto PC, which was mounted in a Citroen Xsara sports car. The venue was a fitting one: the Automobile Museum of Paris, home to many classic vehicles. More than 400 French customers also attended a briefing on Windows CE in the afternoon.

Microsoft also announced today that 18 European distributors and systems integrators have been signed up to help build solutions for Windows CE. Manufacturing partners who exhibited their latest Windows CE-based products and prototypes for the European market also included Casio, Ericsson, Everex, Hewlett-Packard, Philips, and Siemens.

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