Photo Industry and Windows XP Help Users “XPerience” the Magic of Photos

REDMOND, Wash. July 31, 2001 Its not that Whitney Brown doesnt think Windows XP is great; its just that she thinks she can make it even better. Microsoft agrees.

Brown is a director with Shutterfly, a Web-based, digital-photo service that lets users correct and polish their photos, order high-quality prints, and share albums with friends and family anywhere in the world. Shes excited about the new support for digital photography in the forthcoming Microsoft Windows XP operating system, and about how companies like Shutterfly can utilize the Windows XP platform to develop innovative, end-to-end, digital-photography solutions.

Chris Jones, vice president of Windows XP at Microsoft makes a point during a event in which more then 20 key industry leaders showcased their hardware and software solutions for digital photography on the Microsoft Windows XP platform, in New York.

Digital imaging is taking off,” says Brown, “and Windows XP makes it easy and intuitive for first-time digital shutterbugs to work with their images, while providing experienced users with more sophisticated editing tools. Windows XP is a great platform for innovation; it allows companies like Shutterfly to work with Microsoft to deliver truly amazing and compelling solutions for users. Wizard technology, for example, allows companies to extend Windows XP with great capabilities that are just a mouse-click away — such as printing to a Shutterfly photo-greeting card or album.

“Microsoft is really working with the industry to deliver the best possible photography experiences for the user.

Among those who agree with Shutterflys Brown is Mike Viken, senior vice president for Sony Electronics Inc.

“Sony’s Cyber-shot and Mavica digital still cameras and VAIO PCs already create a killer user experience for consumers who want maximum flexibility and ease of use in digital imaging,
“says Viken.”
The digital imaging software integrated into VAIO PCs makes it effortless to enhance and edit images. Adding the multimedia muscle of Windows XP, from its support of Memory Stick media to its seamless end-to-end management of digital images, puts the power of a professional imaging setup in the hands of any consumer — novice or expert.

Shutterfly and Sony are among the companies joining Microsoft in New York today to showcase their digital photo solutions for Windows XP. Those solutions include a broad range of hardware products, software and services, designed to let users capture, manage and share their photos in a seamless and easy way.

The broad array of photo-industry solutions designed to work with Windows XP will be welcome news to Charlie Russel, an information technology director at a software development firm. Russel, whos already finding Windows XP a great aid in managing digital photos, recalls the painstaking efforts it used to take to include photos in the PowerPoint presentations he occasionally gives.

“Taking pictures wasnt the problem, but getting digital photos from the camera to my PC was a nightmare,”
says Russel.

Having Windows XP installed on his laptop for testing has made a world of difference, Russel says. Windows XP offers consumers and business owners like Russel the chance to store and manipulate photos with ease.

With the Windows XP Scanner and Camera Wizard, theres no need to spend time hunting for drivers.

“It couldnt possibly have been easier,”
Russel says.
“With my pictures in the computer, it took only a few minutes to make PowerPoint slides and finish creating my presentation about our new server room.”

While Russel is happily testing Windows XP, the rest of the world will have to hang in there until the operating system makes its official public debut on October 25. John Frederiksen, Microsofts general manager for Windows Marketing, says it will be worth the wait. Microsoft is working hard with photo-industry companies, Frederiksen says, to simplify and enhance end-to-end computing experiences to unleash the power of the PC, and enable consumers to take full advantage of their computers in the easiest possible ways.

“Windows XP unlocks the true potential of personal computing, providing a seamless computing experience, whether the user is communicating with friends and family or creating, storing and sharing digital memories,”
Frederiksen says.
“Its not enough any more just to get pictures onto the PC. Once theyre there, you want to be able to alter them, put them on the Web, send them to friends and family, order prints, or even just make copies of pictures. Windows XP, along with the many photo-industry solutions, will provide users with an unparalleled digital photography experience.”

With Windows XP, transferring photos from a camera or scanner to the computer can take just a few seconds. Consumers simply connect the device to the computer, and pictures are ready for viewing. The Photo Wizard provides options for how to view and save images. All the pictures can be copied to a computer at once, or unneeded images can be deleted before copying. All photos end up in the My Pictures folder, so they are easily found.

The My Pictures folder provides new ways to organize, print, view and share photos. The preview option shows thumbnails of images more quickly, and pictures can then be filed into folders. The slideshow view shows full-screen versions of pictures displayed one at a time on the desktop.

Transmitting photos is also easy with Windows XP because consumers can compress files when they e-mail or post them on the Web, so they load even faster. Windows XP enhances photo-printing capabilities too, with a new layout tool to ensure maximization of available space on photo paper.

“One of the goals behind Windows XP was to make computing easy for users at any skill level,”
Frederiksen says.
“One way to achieve simplicity is to remove steps, so Windows XP contains built-in intelligence that streamlines the process to make photo experiences easier.”

These great features have many people anticipating the release of Windows XP this fall, and the photo industry is no exception. Companies will enhance the power of Windows XP to allow users to order high quality prints, edit, crop and tweak photographs, backup pictures to the web for safekeeping or easily share their photos with friends, family and colleagues. Thanks to companies such as Shutterfly and Sony, people will be able to work with, play with and experience digital photos as never before on October 25th.

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