Microsoft Makes Synchronization of Windows CE-Based Devices Faster and Easier

REDMOND, Wash., Aug. 17, 1999 — Microsoft Corp. today announced the availability of Microsoft® ActiveSync® 3.0 technology, the latest and significantly improved synchronization software for Windows® CE operating system-based Palm-size PCs (P/PCs) and Handheld PCs (H/PCs). ActiveSync 3.0 is dramatically easier to install and use because of a complete redesign of its communications architecture and user interface and improvements to its synchronization speed and overall performance. ActiveSync 3.0 is compatible with all versions of the Palm-size PC and with versions 2 and 3 of the Handheld PC, making it the easiest and most powerful synchronization for Windows CE from Microsoft to date.

The English-language version of ActiveSync 3.0 is available for free download at (connect-time charges may apply). Customers can instead order a CD from the Web site (for a nominal fee to cover CD duplication and shipping costs) that includes ActiveSync 3.0, Microsoft Schedule+, Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.0 for Mobile Channels synchronization, the Windows NT® operating system Service Pack 4 and Microsoft Pocket Streets 3.0. ActiveSync 3.0 will ship with new P/PCs and H/PCs beginning this fall, and some manufacturers will also include the Microsoft Outlook® 2000 messaging and collaboration client.

“We consistently heard from customers that synchronizing Windows CE-based devices with desktop PCs was just too hard to do, and that it should be faster too,”
said Harel Kodesh, vice president of the Productivity Appliance Division at Microsoft.
“To meet this requirement, we’ve completely re-engineered our synchronization technology, giving customers a better experience and a product that is easier to install and use.”

“Our customers rely on us to provide access to their business-critical customer information instantly and accurately from anywhere in the world,”
said Richard Gorman, vice president, product marketing, Siebel Systems Inc.
“We chose the Windows CE platform on which to build our applications because of its flexibility. Now, with the addition of ActiveSync 3.0, our customers can rely on Siebel Handheld to keep them tightly connected to their sales, marketing and service information even when they are on the road.”

“ActiveSync 3.0 is a huge technology advancement and makes synchronizing my Palm-size PC with my desktop PC easier and faster than ever,”
said Woody Fairley, computer systems engineer at Harley-Davidson Inc.
“I installed ActiveSync on a desktop PC with just a few mouse clicks, and in no more than five minutes I enabled all the synchronization services and synchronized the data that I wanted.”

Easier to Install

ActiveSync 3.0 eliminates the need to install Dial-up Networking on any supported version of Windows and eliminates the need to enable remote access server (RAS) on the Windows NT or Windows 2000 operating systems. Now, customers can install ActiveSync 3.0 with as few as six mouse clicks, without having to reboot their PC or device. By automatically detecting serial devices, ActiveSync 3.0 gives users the unprecedented ability to free up serial ports on a PC for another type of serial device, such as a digital camera. This allows customers to interface with all the devices they need through a single serial or infrared port. In addition, for those upgrading, ActiveSync automatically detects changes made to supported Personal Information Manager (PIM) software. For example, this allows customers to automatically upgrade from Schedule+ to Microsoft Outlook without having to reconfigure their synchronization settings.

Faster Performance

With ActiveSync 3.0, users now can set the PC connection speed on their Handheld and Palm-size PCs from 19.2KBps to 115KBps. ActiveSync will automatically detect the selected port speed and update the PC’s serial port to match it. Further, ActiveSync 3.0 will automatically detect and configure the port that is used to connect a device to a PC, whether a serial port or an infrared port is chosen. In addition to serial and infrared connections, ActiveSync 3.0 supports Ethernet and dial-up connections and supports both wired and wireless implementations of those standards.


ActiveSync 3.0 supports Microsoft Windows 95 and Windows 98 – including Second Edition – and Windows 2000 Professional Edition beta 3. ActiveSync 3.0 also supports Microsoft Office 95, Office 97 and Office 2000, including Outlook 97, Outlook 98 and Outlook 2000. Microsoft strongly recommends the use of ActiveSync 3.0 to customers who have supported versions of H/PCs and P/PCs running Windows CE Services 2.0 through 2.2 synchronization software.

Windows CE-based Palm-size and Handheld PCs are a class of personal companion devices that automatically synchronize information with a PC, allowing users to keep essential work and personal data with them at all times. With color-enabled screen displays and applications, Windows CE for the Palm-size and Handheld PC brings an unmatched clarity to applications and information stored on a Windows CE-based device, increasing the readability on these compact, portable devices.

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 to take advantage of the full power of personal computing every day.

Microsoft, ActiveSync, Windows, Windows NT and Outlook 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.

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