This Holiday Season the Early Bird Gets the Deal

REDMOND, Wash., Nov. 1, 2004 — Thanksgiving is still weeks away, but as every holiday shopper who has dealt with long lines, overworked salespeople and jammed parking lots knows, it’s never too early to get a jump on gift buying. As if avoiding the crush at the mall weren’t incentive enough, MSN®
Shopping ( ) is making it even more worthwhile to get a head start on holiday shopping with its Days of Deals promotion.

From Nov. 2 through Nov. 23, MSN Shopping’s Days of Deals will offer savvy shoppers exclusive access to heavily discounted and hot-selling items, with prices slashed by as much as 80 percent. Early birds will be able to splurge on gifts from a wide range of merchants and brands including Burberry, Fendi, Dell, Avon, Blue Nile and many more. With this vast array of merchandise on the site, early online shoppers are sure to find something special for that special someone, and with plenty of time and money to spare.

More and more holiday shoppers are discovering the ease and convenience of purchasing their gifts online. According to the 2004 Online Holiday Mood Study, 32 percent of consumers plan to do more of their holiday shopping online this year.

The benefits of MSN®
Shopping don’t end with big savings and stress-free shopping; the full-service Web site makes it easy for shoppers to find the perfect gift at the right price. Gift buyers who need help finding the perfect present for that hard-to-shop-for person can find inspiration from MSN Shopping’s holiday gift guides, which include recommendations from expert editors to help consumers get the skinny on what’s hot for the holidays, from the latest fashions to the hottest must-have tech toys. The guides also reveal what other online shoppers are buying this season, including the most popular gifts in dozens of categories.

Simple tools such as MSN Shopping Search allow customers to quickly find items such as clothes, games and electronics, as well as compare features, prices and reviews. And up-to-the-minute shipping information will help consumers enjoy even more savings by highlighting which merchants offer free shipping.

“We’re all about holiday shopping made easy,” said Julie Blackwell, business manager for MSN. “Days of Deals on MSN Shopping is a great incentive to start early and save a little money in the process, which leaves getting your picture taken with Santa as the only reason to brave the crowds at the mall.”

About MSN

MSN attracts more than 360 million unique users worldwide per month. With localized versions available globally in 40 markets and 20 languages, MSN is a world leader in delivering Web services to consumers and online advertising opportunities to businesses worldwide. The most useful and innovative online service today, MSN brings consumers everything they need from the Web to make the most of their time online. MSN is located on the Web at . MSN worldwide sites are located at .

About Microsoft

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.Microsoft 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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Web page at on Microsoft’s corporate information pages. Web links, telephone numbers and titles were correct at time of publication, but may have since changed. For additional assistance, journalists and analysts may contact Microsoft’s Rapid Response Team or other appropriate contacts listed at .

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