Microsoft Takes Lead in Bringing Next-Generation Data Services To Mobile Networks

CANNES, France, Feb. 19, 2001 — Today at the 3GSM World Congress event, Microsoft Corp. announced new alliances with the mobile operator community to run trials on its range of enhanced data services over mobile networks beginning in spring 2001.

These trials represent a significant leap forward for Microsoft in bringing its mobile devices platform to market. The provision of rich data services that connect back to data stores held in operator and corporate servers is at the cornerstone of Microsoft’s mobility vision. Telstra Corp., T-Mobil and Vodafone UK are the first mobile operators to publicly announce their intention to test Microsoft® data services in their networks.

“Investments in high-bandwidth networks such as GPRS and UMTS will allow operators to offer value-added services across their networks that will enable a new era of collaboration, information and multimedia services,”
said Ben Waldman, vice president of the Mobile Devices Division at Microsoft.
“It is critical to ensure that the handsets which come to market can deliver the type of advanced functionality and benefits promised to the end user. Microsoft is taking the lead by developing an intensive program to test advanced data services in its networks now, therefore substantially reducing the time to market for next-generation services.”

Trial Plans

Microsoft and its participating mobile operators propose development of an intensive testing framework to run trials on a range of services from Microsoft’s mobility solutions platform as well as third-party companies. These services include Microsoft mobile Outlook® , secure access to corporate data, secure Web access, instant messaging, media playback and device management. Operators will choose from a number of mobile devices including Microsoft’s feature phone and smart phone platforms.

“Telstra is excited to be working with Microsoft and believes that the combined strength of the two industry leaders will bring greater benefits to our customers. Telstra is committed to mobile communications as being more than just for voice transmission and is determined in encouraging the use and growth of data applications,”
said Dick Simpson, group managing director of Telstra OnAir.
“This relationship, as we move toward 2.5G and 3G, will provide critical software designed to cater for the wireless environment and place this technology into the consumers’ hands. Microsoft’s smart phone platform provides the seamless integration with corporate applications, multimedia functionality and broad access to Internet content that end users expect in a next-generation network.”

“Our commitment is to constantly innovate to guarantee corporate customers the best mobile services and the most up-to-date phones,”
said Martin Witt, T-Mobil.
“To achieve this, it is essential to keep pace and to cooperate in the most advanced technology solutions on the market today. Microsoft has demonstrated a true understanding of our business, and we are delighted to partner with them to bring compelling integrated voice and data solutions to our mobile subscribers.”

“Our aim is to make more possible for our customers in the mobile world,”
said Amit Pau, managing director of Vodafone Multimedia Ltd.
“We are constantly looking for new solutions, and this trial with Microsoft is a first step toward making Microsoft applications available to Vodafone customers through handheld mobile devices.”

About Microsoft Phone Platforms

Microsoft is delivering software to handset manufacturers and mobile operators for two telephone solutions. Microsoft Mobile Explorer™
wireless communications software provides a lightweight microbrowser-based solution for mobile phones offering online services. The Microsoft smart phone platform, code-named
“Stinger,” is built on a version of the Microsoft Windows® CE 3.0 operating system specifically optimized for mobile phones to extend battery life and reduce memory requirements.

About Microsoft

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq
) is the worldwide leader in software, services and Internet technologies 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.

Microsoft, Outlook, Mobile Explorer and Windows 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 on Microsoft’s corporate information pages.

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