Microsoft Foresees Wave of Wireless Innovation Founded On Smart Devices, Software and Industry Collaboration

Juha Christensen, corporate vice president, Microsoft Mobile Devices Marketing Group, demos a new Smartphone coming from T-Mobile in summer 2003. Click on the photo for a larger image.

CANNES, France, Feb. 17, 2003 — Today at 3GSM World Congress 2003, Microsoft Corp. announced a series of landmark developments in its work with wireless industry leaders to deliver personal, powerful and customizable applications and services to customers over wireless networks.

“We have before us the extraordinary opportunity to transform how people communicate, and it requires profound commitment and collaboration from all of us in the wireless industry to realize this dream,”
said Juha Christensen, corporate vice president of the Mobile Devices Marketing Group at Microsoft.
“At Microsoft, we believe smart, customizable software based on industry standards, coupled with powerful devices and increased connectivity, will bring about a new era of wireless use that benefits all members of the wireless ecosystem and our customers.”

In his keynote address today at the event, Christensen will outline his vision for the next generation of wireless applications, provide additional details about related Microsoft announcements, and showcase hardware and software innovations that work in concert with Microsoft® Windows®
Powered Pocket PC and Smartphone software, including the following:

  • Commitment from T-Mobile to deliver a Smartphone in its major markets in the summer of 2003

  • The immediate availability to industry partners of the first joint Microsoft and Intel Windows Powered Smartphone concept design

  • The latest wireless Pocket PC from Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd., the SGH-i700, which features an integrated digital camera and will soon be available on GSM/GPRS networks

  • The first commercial availability of the Microsoft Mobile2Market application catalog by Orange SA

Christensen also will share research demonstrating that Windows Powered devices will help operators drive data traffic and increase average revenue per user (ARPU).

“The convergence of voice and data represents a tremendous opportunity for software innovation,”
Christensen said.
“We hope to do our part to accelerate the market for ‘smart’ devices and services not only by building world-class mobile software platforms, but also by working closely with mobile operators, handset manufacturers, application developers, hardware vendors and more. This is a collective effort.”

T-Mobile Demonstrates Further Commitment to Smartphone and Pocket MSN

In a related announcement today, T-Mobile announced its intention to launch Smartphone-based handsets across its major markets in the summer of 2003. The T-Mobile Smartphone manufactured by High Tech Computer Corp. will bring together powerful, exciting services and applications such as photo messaging, full Web access, mobile e-mail, and instant and text messaging — all in a handset comparable in size to today’s mainstream mobile phones.

In the services arena, T-Mobile announced plans to be the first European mobile operator to bring to market Pocket MSN® , a rich new client-based subscription service for Smartphones and Pocket PCs that provides access to the popular MSN services that 300 million unique users worldwide currently enjoy including MSN Hotmail®
, MSN Messenger Service, MSN Alerts and MSN browser content, where available. T-Mobile plans to make Pocket MSN available to customers by the end of the calendar year.

Microsoft and Industry Partners Demonstrate Future Windows Powered Smart Devices

At the event, Microsoft and industry partners will demonstrate new hardware designs for future Windows Powered Pocket PCs and Smartphones. These future products from manufacturers including Samsung and Wistron Corp. are in various stages of development, and they illustrate the broad range of solutions available for evaluation by mobile operators, and ultimately, customers. The Samsung SGH-i700 Pocket PC is a result of Microsoft and Samsung’s commitment to collaborate and develop a portfolio of Windows Powered smart, wireless devices that addresses diverse customer requirements and design preferences. Another hardware design being shown is based on a concept design developed by Microsoft and Intel, which the companies detailed today in a related announcement.

Orange SA Distributes Mobile Applications Through M2M Program

Microsoft and Orange SA today announced that Orange will be the first mobile operator to distribute mobile applications through the Microsoft Mobile2Market program. Orange, working with worldwide Web publisher Handango Inc., will take advantage of the M2M application cataloging system, enabling Orange SPV Smartphone customers to easily acquire, download and use the latest Windows Powered Smartphone applications as they become available.

The Microsoft Mobile2Market program helps thousands of developers across the world simply and cost-effectively bring mobile applications to market and helps mobile operators catalog and make these applications easily available to customers.

Microsoft Demonstrates Solutions Built With Mobile Operators in Mind

Microsoft today also unveiled the results of a wireless industry economic study, commissioned by Microsoft and conducted by independent research firm Edge Research, which indicated that wireless data could play a significant role in a return to profitability for mobile operators. The study looked at usage patterns for users of Windows Powered mobile devices and found an increase in ARPU of approximately 15 percent. This data underscores the dramatic impact and potential for advanced software to transform the mobile industry.

“It’s clear that the wireless industry cannot prosper based on voice subscribers and revenue alone,”
Christensen said.
“What’s needed are new handsets, like the Smartphone, that are built with increased connectivity in mind and can do a whole lot more than simply place voice calls. These smart clients can run a new generation of applications that will become indispensable to people in their work and personal lives and drive much-needed revenue for mobile operators.”

3GSM World Congress, held each year in Cannes, is the world’s largest mobile phone conference. Microsoft is exhibiting in Hall 1 at the Palais du Festival Stand A14 and in the Microsoft Partner Zone, Hall 4, Stand L20 and L21. Microsoft also is participating in several conference events, including the following:

  • “Delivering the promise and potential of mobile data — creating commercial ecosystems to capitalize on the availability of smart networks and smart phones,”
    keynote address by Juha Christensen, Monday, Feb. 17, 10:45–11:10 a.m.

  • Microsoft press conference, keynote address Hall 4, Auditorium K, Tuesday, Feb. 18, noon–1 p.m.

  • MMS Interoperability live demonstration with other handset, client and server vendors in Hall 4, Stand L23, Tuesday, Feb. 18 through Friday, Feb. 21 during normal exhibition hours (see related press release)

  • “Leveraging MMS Infrastructure,”
    address by Mike Wehrs, director of technology and standards for the Mobile Devices Division at Microsoft, Tuesday, Feb. 18, 2:40–3:35 p.m.

  • “How will OMA successfully encompass so many technologies?”
    , panel session with Mike Wehrs, director of technology and standards, Mobile Devices Division, Microsoft, Tuesday, Feb. 18, 4:55–5:30 p.m.
    “The evolution of content for mobile consumer services,”
    keynote address by Judy Gibbons, vice president of the MSN EMEA Business Division, Thursday, Feb. 20, 10:05–10:30 a.m.

More information about Microsoft’s activities and announcements at 3GSM World Congress can be found at

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.

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