Leading Broadband Providers Are Ready For Microsoft’s Xbox Live Online Game Service

REDMOND, Wash., Oct. 30, 2002 — Microsoft Corp. today announced that 10 U.S. and three Canadian broadband service providers will be the first to support the Microsoft® “Xbox (TM) Compatible”
program, making it easy for consumers to identify high-speed service plans that deliver great experiences for Xbox Live. Xbox Live, which launches in the United States and Canada on Nov. 15, is the ultimate online game arena that allows gamers to play games with each other, talk while they play using the Xbox Communicator headset, and download new content to keep games fresh.

Representing nearly 80 percent of the combined U.S. and Canadian broadband markets by the end of the year, the current list of
“Xbox Compatible” broadband service providers includes Bell Canada, BellSouth Corp., Charter Communications Inc., Comcast Corp., Cox Communications Inc., EarthLink Inc., MSN®
, Qwest Communications, Rogers Cable Inc., SBC Communications Inc., TELUS Corp., Time Warner Cable’s Road Runner service and Verizon Communications.

According to J Allard, general manager of the Xbox platform at Microsoft, while Xbox Live is designed to work well with most high-speed Internet services, the
“Xbox Compatible”
service providers are working with Microsoft to help ensure a great user experience on Xbox Live for customers.

“‘Xbox Compatible’ service plans help ensure that playing Xbox Live games across these plans will be quick, simple and hassle-free,”
Allard said.
“Together with ‘Xbox Compatible’ broadband providers, we’re doing the heavy lifting on the service so customers can focus on playing fast-action games. As the only all-broadband gaming service with the support of leading providers, Xbox Live is uniquely positioned to help propel online gaming forward while driving adoption of broadband services by gamers.”

“Online video game services such as Xbox Live give consumers another compelling reason to choose Verizon Online high-speed Internet access this holiday season,”
said John Wimsatt, vice president of marketing for Verizon Advanced Services.
“Only broadband can give video gamers the fast-action play they expect.”

About Xbox Live

Xbox Live is the first comprehensive, online game arena fully dedicated to fast-action broadband gaming experiences. Xbox Live will allow gamers to play multiplayer Xbox games with other gamers everywhere via a high-speed Internet connection. With a built-in hard drive and Ethernet port, the Xbox console was built from the ground up to be an online gaming system.

Xbox Live will enable all gamers to find and play with their friends easily, talk to other players during game play through the Xbox Communicator headset, and download current statistics, new levels and characters to their Xbox hard drive.

About Xbox

Xbox ( http://www.xbox.com/ ) is Microsoft’s future-generation video game system that delivers the most powerful game experiences ever. Xbox empowers game artists by giving them the technology to fulfill their creative visions as never before, creating games that blur the lines between fantasy and reality. Xbox is now available in North America, Japan, Europe and Australia.

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, Xbox, MSN and Whacked! 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.

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