Excite@Home and Microsoft Announce Discussions for Strategic Relationship To Deploy Enhanced TV

LOS ANGELES, Dec. 15, 1999 — Today at the Western Show, Excite@Home, a leading provider of high-speed “always-on” Internet services via the cable infrastructure, and Microsoft Corp. announced they are in discussions to form a strategic relationship to cooperate in the development and deployment of enhanced television technology and services. This collaboration would strengthen and broaden the companies’ two-year working relationship with a new focus on accelerating the rollout of enhanced television services on advanced set-top boxes and other devices. One way the companies hope to speed the delivery of this technology is by reducing multiple system operator (MSO) deployment barriers such as the need to integrate new television services with existing cable operations.

The new level of cooperation would have two key elements: Excite@Home would develop its broadband TV portal application, user interface, and broadband applications and services to work on the Microsoft® TV Platform; and Microsoft would work with Excite@Home to extend the Microsoft TV Platform offer to deliver a turnkey system to support enhanced TV cable systems.

With Microsoft focusing on the Microsoft TV client/server platform, and Excite@Home focusing on broadband applications and services as well as network deployment and operations, the collaboration would result in one of the first and best complete, enhanced TV solutions for cable operators. Each company would provide the necessary support for new enhanced TV rollouts starting in 2000.

Excite@Home and Microsoft would build on their work with existing MSOs and extend their effort to create a widespread offer for the cable industry, while still providing the level of customization that each cable operator requires. More than 20 cable operators in North America already have an exclusive partnership with Excite@Home in the delivery of broadband data services to nearly 60 million homes passed by cable.

“We’re pleased that Microsoft and Excite@Home are discussing such a productive and cooperative relationship for the development of enhanced TV services,” said Adam Grosser, president, @Home Subscriber Services. “As the leading provider of broadband services to the home, Excite@Home will be able to do for the television viewer what we’ve already done for cable modem subscribers, who can now use their personal computers to access media-rich content, new applications and broadband services through the Web. The challenges of realizing enhanced television’s market potential are enormous; it will take both of us, utilizing our respective strengths in support of our cable industry partners, to quickly realize the full potential of this new industry.”

“Excite@Home is in a unique position to support the ambitions of the cable industry to tap into a whole new range of consumer services,” said Phil Goldman, general manager, TV Platform division, Microsoft. “By building atop the Microsoft TV platform, Excite@Home would have the kind of powerful tools it needs to deliver a complete TV service right away.”

About Excite@Home

Excite@Home (Nasdaq “ATHM”) is a global media company offering media services through Excite ( http://www.excite.com/ ) and broadband subscription services through @Home ( http://www.home.com/ ) and @Work ( http://www.work.home.net/ ). MatchLogic ( http://www.matchlogic.com/ ) offers marketers industry-leading digital advertising capabilities including rich media production, ad and e-mail services, user profiling and targeting, and database analysis and management all integrated into a complete solutions package. The company has a worldwide footprint of 72 million cable homes to deliver on its vision of bringing personalized content to consumers “All Band, All Device, All the Time.”

About Microsoft TV Platform

The Microsoft TV platform is a comprehensive software solution for the television industry that makes television more useful, fun and engaging for consumers and creates significant new economic opportunities for network operators and their suppliers of programming, hardware and software. The client software, Microsoft TV, operates a range of TV-centric appliances, from advanced set-top boxes to integrated televisions. Microsoft TV Server is a suite of software components that offers network operators the tools to provision, manage and operate a large-scale, commercial-grade enhanced TV service.

The Microsoft TV platform supports worldwide digital TV broadcast standards, including DVB, ATSC and ARIB. It also supports commonly used Internet standards such as HTML, JavaScript and Dynamic HTML, as well as all interactive content authored according to the Advanced Television Enhancement Forum (ATVEF) standard.

About Microsoft

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) 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.

The information contained in this document relates to a prerelease product that may be substantially modified before its first commercial release. Accordingly, the information may not accurately describe or reflect the product when first commercially released. This document is provided for informational purposes only, and neither Microsoft nor Excite@Home make any warranties, express or implied, with respect to this document or the information contained in it.

This press release contains forward-looking information within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Exchange Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, and is subject to the safe harbors created by those sections. These forward-looking statements include statements relating to the ability of the companies to enter into a definitive agreement related to the development and deployment of advanced television services. Actual results may differ materially due to a number of factors, including Excite@Home’s ability to achieve subscriber growth goals, agreements with and dependence on the actions of cable partners, ability to generate revenue from Internet advertising agreements, and ability to continue to attract traffic to its Web sites. The matters discussed in this press release also involve risks and uncertainties described in Excite@Home’s filings with the SEC. Excite@Home assumes no obligation to update the forward-looking information contained in this press release.

Microsoft is a registered trademark of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries.

©1999 At Home Corp. Excite@Home, @Home, @Work, and MatchLogic are trademarks of At Home Corporation and may be registered in certain jurisdictions.

Other product and company names herein may be trademarks of their respective owners.

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.

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