SAN JOSE, Calif., Dec. 7, 1999 — Today at Streaming Media West ’99, Microsoft Corp. and Preview Systems Inc. announced the first Windows Media TM based solution for distributing, licensing and selling digital music and video, using the ZipLock ® technology of Preview Systems. This combination provides a comprehensive solution for retail media and media distribution companies that want to securely distribute digital music and video using the Microsoft® Windows Media format. Microsoft and Preview Systems have also agreed to cooperate in other digital content industries including electronic books, documents and images.
A leading provider in e-commerce network solutions for distributing and licensing digital goods, Preview Systems will support the Microsoft Windows Media digital rights management (DRM) as one of the key DRM technologies and will integrate it into the ZipLock system. This solution will be one of the first comprehensive solutions built around DRM technology and is expected to be commercially available in the second quarter of 2000.
The growing base of over 50 million users of Windows Media Players presents excellent commercial opportunities for the secure download and purchase of digital entertainment content. Many music labels, artists, film studios and retailers are looking to benefit from the advantages of digital distribution. The combination of the Preview Ziplock system with Windows Media DRM technology will allow secure digital distribution to be as easy as buying any product on the Internet today, such as books, CDs or other consumer products. With this solution, Internet distributors and
will be able to add digital distribution of audio and video content seamlessly into their existing e-commerce infrastructure and offer consumers a familiar shopping experience. Microsoft and Preview Systems will also cooperate in developing solutions for the emerging market of digital music and video distribution.
“Everyone from major record labels to independent filmmakers realizes that the Internet is forever changing distribution,”
said Vincent Pluvinage, Preview Systems president and CEO.
“It dramatically reduces barriers to entry for content producers, and it’s giving consumers faster access to niche and mainstream entertainment. Our collaboration with Microsoft ultimately benefits artists and consumers, record labels and film studios, and their channel and service provider partners.”
“Preview Systems’ digital goods network and e-commerce solution is a great example of how our Windows Media platform enables companies to create a secure distribution infrastructure,”
said Will Poole, general manager of marketing and business development, Streaming Media Division, Microsoft Corp.
“Building this infrastructure is critical for creating viable digital media business models for the entertainment industry.”
“Digital distribution offers tremendous benefits to consumers. This collaboration will help us deliver more high-quality music and an excellent shopping experience to our customers,”
said Ted Hooban, director of Digital Products for CDNOW.
“Preview’s e-commerce network solution for digital goods provides a robust, secure, and scalable platform for us to enable retailers to easily offer digital distribution to their existing e-commerce environments,”
said Charles Jennings, CEO of Supertracks, a provider of digital distribution services for the music industry.
“Its integration with Windows Media Technologies will provide our label, studio and merchant customers with a terrific new option for participating in the growing digital distribution marketplace.”
“The combination of Microsoft’s Windows Media Technologies and Preview’s digital goods infrastructure makes e-commerce easier for consumers and retailers,”
said Jay Alan Samit, EMI Recorded Music’s senior vice president of New Media.
“This is a major step forward in providing complete solutions for digital distribution.”
About the Preview Electronic Delivery Network
Preview’s digital e-commerce solution allows publishers, distributors and resellers to integrate electronic fulfillment of digital goods and licenses into their current e-commerce strategies and to seamlessly network with distribution partners. Preview’s complete solution, which consists of digital packaging tools, license and inventory management system and merchandizing and selling system, provides security, rapid dissemination and real-time audit capabilities to digital goods distribution networks.
About Preview Systems
Preview Systems’ technology enables global e-commerce networks for digital goods. Its systems use the Internet to connect all partners in the distribution chain and provide secure packaging and branding control, flexible fulfillment, and license management and complete customer tracking. Preview Systems’ solutions provide a growing number of publishers, distributors and resellers with the freedom to design their online distribution networks using existing business rules to merchandise unique offerings. Preview Systems’ investors include SOFTBANK Technology Ventures, JP Morgan, Telos Venture Partners, Van Wagoner Capital Management and Olympic Venture Partners. For more information, please visit us on the Web at http://www.previewsystems.com/ .
WindowsMedia.com ( http://windowsmedia.com/ ), part of the MSN TM network of Internet services, is among the fastest-growing major audio and video guides on the Internet. WindowsMedia.com provides access to localized audio and video content worldwide, including major music and video events and entertainment from more than 1,000 content providers.
About Windows Media Technologies
Windows Media Technologies is the leading digital media platform, providing consumers, content providers, solution providers, software developers and corporations with unmatched audio and video quality. Windows Media Technologies 4, which includes Windows Media Player, Windows Media Services, Windows Media Tools and the Windows Media SDK, is available for free* download at http://www.microsoft.com/windows/windowsmedia/ . The Windows Media Player is the fastest-growing media player. More than 50 million copies have been downloaded to date — growing by more than one every second.
Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq
) is the worldwide leader in software for personal and business computing. The company offers a wide range of products and services designed to empower people through great software – any time, any place and on any device.
*Connect-time charges may apply.
Microsoft and Windows Media are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries/regions. Other product and company names herein may be trademarks of their respective owners.
The statements contained in this release that are not purely historical are forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 21E of the Securities and Exchange Act of 1934, including statements regarding Preview’s expectations, beliefs, hopes, intentions or strategies regarding the future and, in particular, growth of the digital content marketplace. All forward-looking statements included in this document are based upon information available to Preview as of the date hereof, and Preview assumes no obligation to update any such forward-looking statement. Actual results could differ materially from current expectations. Factors that could cause or contribute to such differences include, but are not limited to, technical difficulties, growth of electronic commerce for digital content, and the factors and risks discussed in Preview’s periodic filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
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