REDMOND, Wash., Feb. 15, 2000 — Microsoft Corp. today announced the new Windows Media TM Services feature of Microsoft® Windows® 2000 Server, the highest-quality, most scalable cost-effective streaming solution for enterprises today. Windows Media Services offers the only digital media platform built from the ground up for Microsoft Windows 2000 Server and Windows 2000 Advanced Server. Microsoft also announced unmatched scalability in the industry for a digital media server using Windows Media Services on Windows 2000-based servers, providing up to 9,000 concurrent streams of video on a single server.*
Companies are rapidly discovering the benefits of streaming media in their organizations through virtual company meetings,
and the ability to react to changing business conditions quickly with immediate corporate communication to employees, partners and customers. Tight integration between Windows Media and other Windows 2000 Server offerings allows any company that deploys Windows 2000 to get the best platform for streaming digital media, ready-made in every Windows 2000 Server product.
“As the use of digital media continues to explode in corporations and on the Internet, customers demand four key factors: outstanding quality, rock-solid reliability, easy deployment and the ability to scale quickly,”
said Jim Allchin, group vice president, Platforms Group, Microsoft.
“Customers moving to Windows 2000 are now discovering that Windows Media Services offers the best platform for enterprise streaming.”
The new Windows Media Services feature of Windows 2000 Server breaks down the barriers to enterprise streaming by offering the following benefits:
Highest-quality audio and video at any connection speed with the Windows Media Format for audio and near-broadcast-quality video, using less bandwidth compared to other formats; and integrated intelligent streaming that automatically adapts the quality of streaming broadcasts based on network availability and connection speeds
Best scalability in the industry, with the ability to serve up to 9,000 concurrent streams per server and over 2,400 broadband streams at 100KB*
Most cost-effective solution, with no per-stream licensing costs and average savings on deployment costs of over 50 percent compared with competing solutions.** Windows Media has also proven to offer a return of investment of up to 1,800 percent for enterprise customers.***
Easier deployment and interoperation because Windows Media is a core feature of Windows 2000 with seamless compatibility with Microsoft Office and the BackOffice® family
Major Organizations Rely on Windows Media
Major organizations worldwide are realizing the benefits of Windows Media as the premier enterprise streaming solution. Aetna Inc. has conducted virtual company meetings with its entire work force; Hewlett-Packard Co., J.D. Edwards & Co. and SAS Institute Inc. use
internal learning solutions; and Creative Artists Agency and Charles Schwab are now using the Windows Media Services feature of Windows 2000 Server to improve their ability to react quickly to changing business conditions with immediate corporate communication.
As one of the most prestigious talent agencies in Hollywood, Creative Artists Agency (CAA) has been using the Windows Media Services feature of Windows 2000 Server for its own intranet-based digital media infrastructure. This solution improves customer service and delivers dramatic reductions in time and cost in sharing information.
One of the first key applications CAA offered was live television network broadcasts via its PC network. Using Windows Media, CAA was able to convert live broadcasts on the fly into the Windows Media streamed digital video format and deliver them directly to employee PC desktops running the Windows Media Player feature of Windows 2000 Professional. Now CAA agents can have immediate access to a client’s television show or video, allowing the agents to provide immediate feedback and develop closer relationships with their clients. At the same time, CAA has reduced costs and created a more efficient solution that eliminates the process of manually taping, cataloguing and distributing hundreds of daily video feeds and requires no additional television and video infrastructure in its offices.
“Integrating digital media into our offices allows us to better manage our client relationships and be more effective in our business,”
said Michael Keithley, CIO of Creative Artists Agency.
“Windows Media gives CAA a complete, reliable and cost-effective software infrastructure with which to embrace the Internet and improve ways we work with our clients.”
Windows Media Services will power the live global webcast of the Windows 2000 launch event on Thursday, Feb. 17. People around the world can view the event at http://www.microsoft.com/windows2000/launch/keynote.asp .
Availability of Windows Media in Windows 2000
Windows Media Services is a feature of Windows 2000 Server and Windows 2000 Advanced Server. Windows Media Player is a feature of Windows 2000 Professional, Windows 2000 Server and Windows 2000 Advanced Server. The Windows 2000 family of operating systems will be publicly available on Feb. 17, 2000.
About Windows Media
Windows Media 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, available in 24 languages, 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.
*Based on a study prepared by Approach Inc., an independent professional services firm, using a comparison of RealNetworks G2 vs. Windows Media running on the Windows NT® operating system 4.0 with 10,000 company employees.
**Based on internal Microsoft benchmarks.
***Based on Aberdeen study of Hewlett Packard’s deployment of Windows Media
****Connect-time charges may apply.
Microsoft, Windows Media, Windows, Windows NT, BackOffice and PowerPoint are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries.
The names of actual companies and products mentioned herein may be the 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.
Microsoft Windows Media Services
“Cisco has pioneered bandwidth-efficient multicast capabilities that allows Windows Media Services to scale across enterprise networks and throughout the Internet,”
said Peter Alexander, vice president of Enterprise Marketing.
“Our multicast-enabled routers and switches, coupled with the Windows Media Services feature of Windows 2000, allow customers to deploy reliable, enterprisewide streaming video solutions today.”
“As the original convergence company, MSNBC is always looking for better ways to handle the growing demand for multimedia. We rely on Windows Media Services for all our streaming content, and, with the deployment of Windows 2000, we’re seeing performance exceed our expectations,”
said John Nicol, general manager, MSNBC.
“Hewlett-Packard has started to deploy Windows 2000 across its infrastructure,”
said Francois Argouges, Microsoft alliance director at Hewlett-Packard Co.
“We’re excited about being able to leverage the included Windows Media streaming media services within HP as well as offer Windows Media in a new e-service business initially with one specific ISP.”
“RollingStone.com is the one-stop destination for all things music. Part of what we offer is the ability to experience music on the Web. We deliver 350,000 audio and video streams a month and use Windows Media for narrowband to broadband,”
says Scott Mitchell, chief technology officer of RollingStone.com & Co.
“We deployed Windows 2000 Server because of the scalability and administration benefits that are part of the new operating system. We are excited about the built-in integration of Windows Media and the Windows 2000 operating system because Windows Media consistently delivers to our visitors a top-quality audio and video experience at any bandwidth. Because of the level of integration, administration tools and scalability, Windows 2000 is the best platform for serving Windows Media.”
“We see digital media as the next wave in reaping the benefits of our networking investments,”
said Ken Migaki, director of infrastructure services at J.D. Edwards.
“The launch of Windows 2000 with its new integrated Windows Media Services offers us a very easy way to begin deploying advanced digital media applications for communications and knowledge management.”
POPcast Communications Corp., the leading provider of self-service webcasting, is pleased to announce it is now operating its Windows Media-based services exclusively on Windows 2000.
“The inherent load balancing, advanced clustering and other resource management capabilities in Windows 2000 are providing POPcast with exceptional gains in reliability and scalability of Windows Media,”
said William Mutual, POPcast president and founder.
POPcast.com currently manages tens of thousands of personal consumer and business video accounts and regularly serves more than 100,000 Windows Media-based streams per day. POPcast’s integrated server architecture presents an extremely complex topology with interaction between a global network of Windows Media-based servers and Microsoft SQL Server TM -based data warehouses. With Windows Media built into Windows 2000 Server, the process of servers talking to each other is simplified, saving our IS team time and preventing headaches.”
“Akamai provides our customers with the highest performance streams and applications that leverage our global distributed network of more than 2,000 media servers,”
said George Kurian, vice president of Product Management at Akamai Technologies Inc.
“We have deployed Windows 2000 Advanced Server with Windows Media Services installed into the network, which meets our need to provide this critical service to our customers.”
“SAS Institute has been using Windows Media for live webcasts and video on demand for the past two years,”
said Bill Marriott, director of SAS Video Productions at the billion-dollar data warehousing and decision-support software company.
“We’re looking to Windows 2000 and its tighter integration with PowerPoint® , Word and other Microsoft desktop products to help accelerate our cost-effective use of streaming media to deliver key information to SAS employees worldwide.”
Philadelphia-based Widener University is committed to offering the latest in information technology, enriching education for its 7,000 students and streamlining campus administration for its 1,000 faculty and staff members. Widener depends on the Windows operating system to deliver high-end multimedia applications for self-guided learning, distance learning and Internet access across three campuses and is in the process of migrating servers and desktops to run Windows 2000.
“Windows 2000 is the most stable Windows NT-based operating system we’ve experienced to date,”
said Gary Habermann, director of technical resources, Widener University.
“We expect to serve hundreds of simultaneous 1-megabit-per-second Windows Media-based streams over our campus network, and we know we can count on Windows 2000 Server to deliver.”
“As one of the pioneers in streaming media delivery for leading Content Providers, fidelity, reliability, scalability and cost effectiveness are critical for our business,” said Tom Gillis, vice president, marketing of iBEAM Broadcasting. “We’ve been streaming Windows Media running on Windows 2000 for the past 7 months and it not only meets and exceeds our critical needs, but it does it at a lower cost than competing solutions.”