HANNOVER, Germany, March 13, 2003 — In its consumer-focused press conference at the CeBIT 2003 technology fair, Microsoft Corp. re-emphasized its commitment to
“Smart Living” in the Digital Decade by demonstrating new and ongoing developments in its cornerstone consumer-facing products and by showing how they have been tailored to meet the needs of German and broader European markets. Key progress was announced in consumer software offerings and services, including availability of Microsoft® Windows®
Powered Smart Displays from Philips and ViewSonic Corp. in five European markets. Also announced was that Creative Technology Ltd. will be building a Portable Media Player based on the
platform. In addition, the availability of the Xbox Live (TM) service in Germany and other European markets was announced. Microsoft also outlined how these announcements further its efforts to build
connected devices and services to help simplify people’s daily tasks, improve their communications and entertain them for years to come.
“It’s the software that brings the connected home to life,”
said Keith White, Microsoft senior marketing director.
“Microsoft and its industry partners are transforming the way Europeans live, work and play in the Digital Decade. The delivery of these products we are announcing today into the European marketplace solidifies our commitment here.”
The press conference highlighted consumer news regarding smart devices and smart services, including the following:
Windows Powered Smart Display, European availability. In conjunction with industry partners Philips and ViewSonic, Microsoft announced the retail availability of Smart Displays in five initial European markets: Belgium, France, Germany, Holland and the United Kingdom. ViewSonic launched its 10-inch airpanel V110 Smart Display and 15-inch airpanel V150 Smart Display, both of which are available from Karstadt and Amazon.de in Germany, Dixons Store Group and Amazon.co.uk in the United Kingdom, and Surcouf, Fnac, and Amazon.fr in France. Philips’ 15-inch DesXcape 150DM Smart Display will be available from, PC World and Dixons in the United Kingdom, Fnac and Surcouf in France, Fnac in Belgium and the Netherlands, and Saturn and Expert in Germany.
New Smart Display partner. Microsoft announced that Packard Bell, the consumer division of NEC Computers International (NEC CI) and one of Europe’s home PC leaders , is joining a growing number of industry-leading computer and display manufacturers worldwide to develop a Windows Powered Smart Display. Packard Bell will develop a 10-inch Smart Display, scheduled to be available in Europe by the end of the first half of 2003.
showcased in Europe. Microsoft showcased
the code name for its new portable media player device platform, for the first time in the European market.
devices are handheld personal media players that enable entertainment on the go by providing consumers with an easy and complete solution to download, store and play back all their favorite digital media content including video, music and photos. The company also announced that Creative Technology, a worldwide leader in innovative digital entertainment products, is the newest
partner that will be building devices based on
Creative Technology will join previously announced industry partners Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd., ViewSonic, SANYO Electric Co. Ltd. and iRiver Inc. in delivering innovative
-based consumer devices in late 2003.
Windows Powered mobile devices momentum. Microsoft showcased a number of exciting new devices and services, focused on consumers, including these:
Pocket PC devices from HP (the iPAQ Pocket PC h1915, which features a super-slim lightweight design) and Panasonic (the Panasonic Pocket PC, which has a rugged form factor designed for heavy industrial work), and two devices from Toshiba (the e750 Wi-Fi, which sets a new benchmark for top-end Pocket PC technology and with its processing power and on-board wireless LAN make it the ultimate personal productivity tool for today’s mobile professionals, and the stylish e350, which is ideal for first-time buyers)
Building on the success of the Orange SPV — the world’s first Windows Powered mobile phone, launched in October 2002 — Microsoft offered a first look at the
the code name for the new Smartphone from Orange, which is optimized for games, music and entertainment services.
Xbox Live launch. Xbox Live officially launches tomorrow in the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Spain, Italy, Sweden, Holland and Belgium. Beginning March 14, retail outlets in the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Belgium, Netherlands and Sweden will start selling the Xbox Live Starter Kit for the special introductory price of 59.99 euros or 39.99 pounds. With Xbox Live, players can connect with each other across Europe, North America and Japan, chatting with old friends and meeting new ones to share game experiences online, across continents, no matter what time of day it is. With a broad lineup of sports, action, racing, first-person shooters and role-playing games set to roll out in the coming months, Xbox Live players will be able to test themselves against a wide variety of opponents on a unified service that allows consistency across all games. Currently, there are more than 350,000 gamers playing on Xbox Live.
Windows XP Media Center Edition demonstrations. Microsoft demonstrated Windows XP Media Center Edition at the press conference and announced its commitment to offering it to the European marketplace later this year.
Windows XP Media Center Edition turns a PC into a media center that integrates digital entertainment experiences with the freedom of remote-control access. Consumers can enjoy live television, personal video recording, music, photos, videos and DVDs from a new remote-controlled PC experience called Media Center. Windows XP Media Center Edition, which builds on the rich media platform of Windows XP, was launched to critical acclaim in the United States in October 2002. Windows XP Media Center Edition is now shipping on Media Center PCs from more than 24 OEM partners in the United States and Canada including Alienware Corp., Gateway Inc. and HP, with ViewSonic and Toshiba expected later this year. In addition, Samsung is shipping Media Center PCs in Korea.
About Microsoft at CeBIT 2003
Visitors to the show can find out about a range of Microsoft products in Hall 4, Booth A38 on the main, 3000 m2 booth. New products in 2003, such as Windows Server 2003 and the next generation of Microsoft Office (code-named
“Office 11” ), will be presented in real-life scenarios. Current products such as Visual Studio®
.NET and Tablet PC will be complemented with additional solutions presented by Microsoft partners.
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, Xbox Live and Visual Studio 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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