Microsoft Celebrates One-Year Anniversary of Mobility Partner Advisory Council, Setting the Bar High for Industry Partner Programs

REDMOND, Wash., Feb. 12, 2003 — Microsoft Corp. today announced and celebrated the first anniversary of its Mobility Partner Advisory Council (MPAC). Formed as a specialized arm of the global Mobile Solutions Partner Program (MSPP), the MPAC serves as a focused feedback mechanism for Microsoft® mobility platform development and to provide an enhanced go-to-market program to support companies making significant investments and inroads in delivering solutions for Microsoft Windows®
Powered devices.

“This program was developed based on partners’ feedback and because we understand that platform success requires great relationships. Through MPAC, we strive to provide a one-of-a-kind engagement model for top strategic partners that assists them in growing their businesses,”
said Juha Christensen, corporate vice president of the Mobile Devices Division at Microsoft.
“The program has seen an extremely successful year as evidenced by the business advances industry partners and our platform have made.”

“Words cannot express how excited Pharos is to be involved in the MPAC,”
said James Oyang, Ph.D., chairman and founder of Pharos Science and Applications Inc.
“This has been a fantastic situation for our sales and new business teams and has afforded us many business opportunities. One of our most exciting accomplishments was the 53 percent sell-through growth in 2002.”

The select group of leading systems integrators (SIs), independent software vendors (ISVs), and independent hardware vendors (IHVs) that have been involved in the MPAC over the past year are offered a comprehensive menu of partner-determined benefits in three primary categories: sales engagement, marketing programs and dedicated technical resources.

Sales Engagement

The Microsoft Mobile Devices Division includes a team of Enterprise Mobility Sales Specialists (EMSSs), dedicated to creating and offering Microsoft mobility solutions to joint customers. These sales specialists receive ongoing training in a curriculum that includes MPAC member products and solutions, which enable them to provide the best customized mobility solutions for their and Microsoft’s mutual customers.

“The MPAC has offered Synchrologic the opportunity to demonstrate just how valuable Microsoft mobile platforms can be for the enterprise. This directly translates into success for both of our organizations,”
said John Dancu, president and COO of Synchrologic.
“By working through MPAC as well as the Mobile Workplace initiative, a great environment has been created for mobility solution providers to partner and deliver complete, low-cost, end-to-end wireless solutions to the enterprise. You’ll see evidence of this at companies such as Standard & Poor’s in the United States, GE Capital in the United Kingdom, and Wrigley’s in Germany, where they have mobilized mission-critical information to large groups of employees using our software on Microsoft mobile platforms. These companies immediately saw the benefit of solving their mobility issues with the best software and service providers in the market, running on the top mobile platform in the market.”

Marketing Programs

MPAC members participate in a number of joint go-to-market programs within the Microsoft Mobile Devices Division. Recently, MPAC members and Microsoft jointly participated in a worldwide advertising campaign that will showcase partners and their products and solutions. Cap Gemini Ernst & Young, a world leader in management consulting and IT services, and Ilium Software Inc., an independent software vendor specializing in Windows Powered applications, were excited about the opportunity.

“The MPAC marketing programs are of great value to Cap Gemini Ernst & Young as they allow us to closely align ourselves with Microsoft around the attainable and measurable business value of enterprise mobility,”
said Hans Torin, vice president and global director of mobility at Cap Gemini Ernst & Young.
“For a large, global systems integrator like Cap Gemini Ernst & Young, showing client business value along with the opportunity to drive mobile device sales and perpetuate momentum in the industry is a rewarding endeavor.”

“The marketing opportunities offered to MPAC members are valuable to a range of partner companies of different sizes and with different needs,”
said Kenneth Morse, president and CEO of Ilium Software.
“We’re absolutely thrilled to take advantage of Microsoft’s marketing horsepower and achieve the reach and exposure the advertising campaign will offer exclusively to MPAC members. We find this to be a unique opportunity in the mobile industry and anticipate continued success with our Pocket PC and Smartphone applications.”

Technical Resources

MPAC members receive a significant amount of dedicated technical and development resources, including architectural support for beta products and early access to development tools that drive higher-quality products to market sooner. DAT Group, a Microsoft Solutions Provider offering solutions from infrastructure to browser implementation, and FieldCentrix Inc., a provider of wireless, Internet-based software for the field service industry, have taken advantage of the MPAC support by engaging with the dedicated Microsoft Consulting resources to develop next-generation products based on Microsoft mobile platforms.

“DAT have gained significant commercial and technical benefits from our membership in MPAC. Exposure to our peers in the mobile industry has helped us considerably to mature our technology and go-to-market strategies, and the programme’s technical support enabled us to go to market quicker with applications for the Windows Powered Smartphone,”
said Phil Greenhalgh, product director of DAT Group.
“We were one of the first companies to deploy such applications on the market, thus gaining a distinct competitive advantage.”

“FieldCentrix has utilized membership in MPAC to extend its leadership position in field service automation,”
said Mike Gillis, vice president of strategic business development at FieldCentrix.
“Access to the top Microsoft technical engineers and consultants has kept us on the cutting edge of mobility and wireless and allowed FieldCentrix to develop our innovative solutions on the latest Microsoft mobile technologies. As a result, we have secured new business within some existing key enterprise accounts. We have been able to attribute a new 1,000-seat win as well as several new enterprise pilots to our leadership role in the MPAC.”

“Next week, Microsoft and its MPAC partners are gathering at the fifth quarterly meeting aligned with 3GSM World Congress to discuss the latest sales opportunities and joint mobility strategy,”
said Mary Rose Becker, group manager for the MPAC program at Microsoft.
“In the past year, it’s been great to see the level of commitment these companies have dedicated to our platform. This is a true win-win for MPAC partners and customers. We look forward to continued success in the coming year, including growth and expansion of the MPAC program.”

About Microsoft in Mobility

Microsoft seeks to enable intelligent communications, not just by connecting devices, but by connecting people to each other and their data so they can make informed decisions. Microsoft mobility solutions reduce the complexity and constraints that hobble the flow of personal and business communications, helping individuals and organizations achieve their productivity goals.

Microsoft mobile solutions are a key component of Microsoft’s end-to-end wireless strategy to provide mobile Internet solutions that utilize technologies such as Microsoft mobile devices, Pocket PC platforms and Smartphone software, as well as Mobile Information Server, Microsoft Exchange Server, Microsoft .NET Server products, Microsoft Windows Media® Technologies and MSN®
Mobile Service.

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, Windows Media and MSN 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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