Microsoft Announces Digital Media Upgrade for Windows XP With Final Release of Windows Media Player 9 Series and Windows Movie Maker 2

REDMOND, Wash., Jan. 7, 2003 — Microsoft Corp. today announced the release of the final versions of Windows Media® Player 9 Series and the new Windows®
Movie Maker 2 for the Windows XP operating system. Windows XP customers can enjoy a complete digital media upgrade enabling dramatic new digital media experiences on their PCs. Windows Media Player 9 Series offers a host of new and improved features for beginners as well as digital media enthusiasts and power users who demand ultimate control and audiophile-level quality for creating, managing and playing back their digital music and video collections. Windows Movie Maker 2 has been completely redesigned to take advantage of state-of-the-art technology and remove the complexity and confusion from home video editing, allowing users to create and edit home movies with professional-looking transitions and video effects in just minutes.

“Windows Media Player 9 Series and Windows Movie Maker 2 represent our continued commitment to offering customers of Windows XP the best digital media experience for their PCs,”
said Dave Fester, general manager of the Windows Digital Media Division at Microsoft.
“Whether you want to listen to your favorite songs with the highest possible audio quality, watch a movie online with 5.1-channel surround sound, or create your own edited home movies in minutes instead of hours, both of these features really make it easy for mainstream PC users to tap the full potential of their computers.”

Windows Media Player 9 Series: More Play, Your Way

Windows Media Player 9 Series offers digital media enthusiasts new and improved features to provide faster and more flexible playback, new Smart Jukebox features to make managing and enjoying digital media effortless, and unmatched audio and video quality with support for the new innovations in Windows Media Audio and Video 9 Series. The new player is tuned for performance throughout, from startup times for music playback to the time it takes to search even the largest personal media libraries. For example, users can search a 10,000-song collection and access the audio and video library by as much as 5,000 percent faster than in previous versions. When playing streaming content from the new streaming server, Windows Media Services 9 Series in Windows .NET Server 2003, the new player provides support for Fast Streaming, offering instant on/always on streaming for broadband users and a dramatic improvement in responsiveness for dial-up users.

Windows Media Player 9 Series also takes the work out of finding, organizing and burning personal digital media by offering intelligent music mix management with Auto Playlists and automated organization with Auto Info to automatically update an existing digital music collection with the correct track, artist and album names. Windows Media Player 9 Series also redefines audio and video quality for digital media fans and audiophiles, with full support for the remarkable Windows Media Audio and Video 9 Series technology. Whether streaming over networks ranging from dial-up to broadband or playing content back locally, users will enjoy the highest quality and breakthrough audio and video experiences. These experiences include 20 percent to 50 percent improvement in video quality over previous versions and the first 5.1-channel surround sound streamed across the Web at rates as low as 128 Kbps and 96kHz/24-bit audio fidelity.

The new player also offers an innovative Premium Services tab that gives users easy access to a broad range of music and video subscription services from CinemaNow, FullAudio Corp. and pressplay. The Premium Services tab provides the most seamless access to high-quality music and video content from these leading subscription services.

Windows Movie Maker 2 – Create Professional-Looking Home Movies in Minutes

Windows Movie Maker 2 for Windows XP redefines fast and easy home video creation with a new, more intuitive, task-based user interface, improved timeline and storyboard views, and a new breakthrough feature called AutoMovie, which allows anyone to create a professional-looking home video in just minutes. Windows Movie Maker 2 for Windows XP also offers nearly 30 video effects, 60 video transitions and more than 40 titles and credits, giving users many creative options. Through support for Windows Media Video 9, users can enjoy the most efficient way to edit and store a home movie and share it with friends and family. The advanced compression of Windows Media Video 9 means users can store the equivalent of 15 one-hour DV tapes in just 10 GB of hard drive space. Using DV-AVI, the same 10GB hard drive would store only 45 minutes of video footage — not even enough to store a standard DV tape.

Windows Movie Maker 2 also provides users with more ways to share their home movies, including burning them to CD, sending them in e-mail, sharing them on a Pocket PC or saving them back to a digital video camera. Users can also share their home movies over the Internet using Web sharing services such as Neptune Mediashare and POPcast Inc., or burn them to DVD with leading third-party DVD-burning software such as Sonic MyDVD or MedioStream neoDVD.


The final version of Windows Media Player 9 Series is available for download beginning Jan. 7 at noon PST at and h Versions also are available for the Microsoft®
Windows 98 Second Edition, Windows Millennium Edition (Windows Me) and Windows 2000 operating systems.

The final version of Windows Movie Maker 2 for Windows XP is available for download beginning tomorrow, Jan. 8, at Windows Media Player 9 Series will also be available on Windows Update at this time.

Both Windows Media Player 9 Series and Windows Movie Maker 2 are available in English and will be available during the next three months in 26 languages including Arabic, simplified Chinese, traditional Chinese, Czech, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, French, German, Greek, Hebrew, Hungarian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Slovak, Slovenian, Spanish, Swedish and Turkish.

More information about the features and new experiences made possible by Windows Media Player 9 Series and Windows Movie Maker 2 for Windows XP can be found at

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, Windows Media 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.

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