REDMOND, Wash., and SEOUL, South Korea, Oct. 9, 2002 — Microsoft Corp. and KT (Korea Telecom), the largest telecom provider in Korea, today announced that KT is the first telecommunications operator in the world to deploy Microsoft® Windows Media®
9 Series. KT is using Windows Media 9 Series to power its new broadband video-on-demand service called HomeMedia, which launches today. KT’s HomeMedia service will use key innovations of the new Windows Media 9 Series to deliver over 2,000 on-demand movies and television programming, from the leading Korean movie studios and the leading national television networks, to its 4.4 million broadband Internet users. HomeMedia also will be the first service in the world designed to connect the PC to the television in the living room with a wireless connection using Windows Media 9 Series. This new service demonstrates how the PC is rapidly transforming into a mainstream entertainment device for the home.
“Our goal at KT with the HomeMedia service was to design a breakthrough consumer experience for the sophisticated broadband users of Korea with compelling Korean film and TV content,”
said Yoon Jong Lok, senior vice president of the e-Biz group at KT.
“As the first digital media technology tailored for the broadband world, with pioneering innovations like Fast Streaming, offering a more TV-like experience on the Web and the ability to stream movies with 5.1 surround sound, Windows Media 9 Series will really differentiate our service in the Korean marketplace.”
Korea is one of the leading broadband marketplaces in the world, where over 67 percent of Internet users have high-speed broadband Internet access.* KT’s HomeMedia service is designed to offer KT’s more than 4.4 million broadband Internet subscribers a wide variety of entertainment and information streamed using Windows Media Player on a PC over broadband Internet connections at both 500 Kbps and 1 Mbps.
“KT has been a leader in developing Korea into one of the most wired countries for broadband usage in the world,”
said Will Poole, vice president of the Windows Media Platforms Division at Microsoft.
“HomeMedia and the close cooperation KT has developed with local movie studios and television networks are models for using the power of the Internet to give consumers a wide selection of high-quality content on demand, anywhere in their home.”
HomeMedia programming will include leading local Korean-language movies, popular television shows such as soap operas and dramas from major domestic and foreign broadcasting companies, and educational programming. Cinema Service, the largest filmmaker and distributor in Korea, will be providing major local movie content to the service, and KT is in discussions with major international studios to add their content to the service. This new broadband service also will offer an innovative new option to use special hardware to connect subscribers’ PC directly to their televisions, with wireless or wired connections, to view on-demand streaming movies and other programs on the television. KT plans to expand this service to include on-demand music services, or audio on-demand (AOD) services, by next year.
KT will be deploying Windows Media Services 9 Series on Windows®
.NET Server to power the service with all content offered using the new Windows Media 9 Audio and Video format. Once deployed, Windows Media 9 Series’ Fast Streaming innovations will provide KT customers with a more television-like streaming experience and better performance and reliability. In addition to pioneering the first technology to enable 5.1 surround sound audio and video delivery over the Web, combined with high-quality full-screen streaming video, Windows Media 9 Series offers KT and their content partners a mature third-generation Windows Media 9 digital rights management (DRM) technology to secure their valuable video assets.
HomeMedia will offer several pricing options for customers including one-time pay-per-view ranging from $1 to $3 (U.S.) and subscription packages for specific collections of videos between $5 and $10. KT, the largest telephone, broadband, wireless and satellite broadcasting company in Korea, will manage the HomeMedia service. KTH ( http://www.hitel.net/ ), a wire and wireless integrated content provider, will be in charge of planning and operation for the HomeMedia service. Companies interested in exploring having their content distributed on the HomeMedia service can contact Digital Prism Co. Ltd. (h http://www.digitalprism.co.kr/ ), KT’s point of contact for information.
About Windows Media
Windows Media is the leading digital media platform, used by consumers, content providers, solution providers, software developers and corporations throughout the world. The new Windows Media 9 Series will power the next wave of digital media, delivering the best playback experience, unmatched audio and video quality, integrated optional digital rights management technology, and the most comprehensive platform for developing digital media products and services. The Windows Media platform includes Windows Media Player; Windows Media Services, the powerful streaming server for distributing content; Windows Media Encoder for content creation; Windows Media Audio and Video for the best-quality audio and video; Windows Media DRM for protecting content; and the Windows Media Software Development Kit for software developers. Windows Media Player, available in 26 languages, is the fastest-growing and now leading media player. More information about Windows Media can be found at http://www.microsoft.com/windowsmedia/ .
KT (which recently changed its name from Korea Telecom, NYSE: KTC), established in 1981, provides various telecommunications services including local, long-distance and international calling; satellite communication; data transmission; and wireless telephone services in Korea. As its new motto of the Value Networking Company, KT also offers network portals and world-leading high-speed broadband Internet services market using asymmetric digital subscriber lines (ADSLs).
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.
* Korean Ministry of Information and Communications, Sept. 24, 2002
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