Expanded Agreement Between Microsoft, Thomson Opens Door to Range Of Complementary Digital Television and Personal Computer Products

LAS VEGAS, Jan. 9, 2003 — Microsoft Corp., the worldwide leader in software, services and Internet technologies for personal and business computing, and Thomson SA, a worldwide provider of technologies, products and services on the video image chain, today announced expanded integration of Microsoft® Embedded software such as the Windows®
CE operating system into a range of RCA and RCA Scenium digital television sets, an arrangement designed to enhance the home entertainment and interactive experience for millions of consumers. The announcement was made as the world’s leading electronics companies gather here this week for the 2003 International Consumer Electronics Show (CES).

“Thomson and Microsoft are dedicated to creating smart, connected next-generation devices for the home,”
said Eric Meurice, executive vice president of the WW Television Division at Thomson.
“We see the PC and TV as complementary appliances whose shared technologies can lead to enriched and expanded consumer capabilities. In this scenario, the PC serves as the homeowner’s primary storage and management medium while the TV remains the focal point for entertainment.”

“Microsoft and Thomson share a common vision for the Digital Decade. Select RCA Scenium HDTV sets from Thomson already utilize advanced Microsoft software such as Windows CE that provides consumers with powerful capabilities, such as support for Internet access, above and beyond standard TV functionality,”
said Todd Warren, general manager of the Embedded and Appliance Platforms Group at Microsoft.
“We’re excited to be working together to find new ways to enhance the integration between the PC and TV, particularly for the RCA line, providing our mutual customers with even more compelling experiences and access to information.”

Thomson’s most advanced high-definition television sets already utilize the Windows CE operating system, which allows, for example, RCA Scenium HDTV sets to easily browse broadband Internet content.* The 52-inch, 61-inch and 65-inch RCA Scenium home entertainment products are the industry’s only HDTVs with Internet-browsing capability. The RCA Scenium HD52W140 rear-projection HDTV will be highlighted at CES by Microsoft in both the CES opening keynote address delivered by Chairman and Chief Software Architect Bill Gates and Microsoft’s home products display.

According to Meurice, today’s announcement will lead to RCA and RCA Scenium digital televisions with additional home-networking capabilities such as the ability to access and run PC-stored video, picture and audio files on televisions utilizing Microsoft technologies such as Windows CE. Some of the expanded capabilities from integrated Microsoft technologies will start appearing in RCA and RCA Scenium products in 2004.

With its current line of RCA and RCA Scenium HDTV sets and HDTV monitors, Thomson offers consumers one of the industry’s broadest selections of digital high-definition television products including direct-view, rear projection, plasma and micro-display technologies with outstanding picture and sound performance.

About Thomson

With sales of 10.5 billion euros (U.S. $9.3 billion) in 2001, Thomson (Euronext Paris: 18453; NYSE: TMS) provides a wide range of video (and enabling) technologies, systems, finished products and services to consumers and professionals in the entertainment and media industries. To advance and enable the digital media transition, Thomson has five principal divisions: Digital Media Solutions, Displays and Components, Consumer Products, Patents and Licensing, and New Media Services. The company distributes its products under the Technicolor, Grass Valley, THOMSON and RCA brand names. More information can be found at http://www.thomson.net/.

Thomson’s Consumer Products division is represented by a broad range of home entertainment products, marketed primarily under the RCA brand in the Americas and under the THOMSON brand in Europe. Thomson is a leader in high-definition digital television, MP3 digital audio and DVD disc products. The company’s most advanced consumer products are sold under the RCA Scenium banner, emphasizing superior technology and elegant design. More information can be found at http://www.rca.com/.

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.

* Broadband service required; sold separately.

Certain statements in this press release, including any discussion of management expectations for future periods, constitute
“forward-looking statements”
within the meaning of the
“safe harbor”
of the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such forward-looking statements are based on management’s current expectations and beliefs and are subject to a number of factors and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from the future results expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements due to changes in global economic, business, competitive market and regulatory factors. More detailed information on the potential factors that could affect the financial results of Thomson is contained in Thomson’s filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Microsoft 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 http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/ on Microsoft’s corporate information pages. Web links, telephone numbers and titles were correct at time of publication, but may since have changed. For additional assistance, journalists and analysts may contact Microsoft’s Rapid Response Team or other appropriate contacts listed at http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/contactpr.asp.

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