Saks, Microsoft Team Up on Holiday “Windows”

NEW YORK– Nov. 23, 2009 – In New York City, it wouldn’t be the holidays without the annual department store window displays. Among the most famous are the windows of Saks Fifth Avenue, a holiday tradition since 1949.

For 2009 the Saks windows get a technology assist from Microsoft and Windows 7. This year’s windows will feature scenes from Saks’ holiday children’s book, “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Flake” – the story of a snowflake named Twinkle. More than 20 video monitors provided by Microsoft and powered by Windows 7 will help animate some of the book’s key scenes. The windows will also feature ice-skating penguins and a voiceover of the book that is audible to passersby. In addition, holiday shoppers can tweet their holiday wishes using #holidaywindows and have them appear in the Saks windows, making the windows interactive.

Along with the display windows, Saks and Microsoft have created interactive in-store lounges for shoppers. The specially constructed lounges feature Windows 7-based PCs, with Microsoft experts on hand to answer questions about the software and hardware. Shoppers who can’t be in New York City this year can still participate by downloading a special Windows 7 holiday theme pack featuring Twinkle and some of the key scenes from the book at the Windows Personalization Gallery.

Special events at the Saks Fifth Avenue window unveiling, which took place Nov. 23, included an appearance by Broadway singing star Kristin Chenoweth, currently appearing in the Off Broadway production “Love, Loss and What I Wore.” Steve Sadove, chairman and CEO of Saks Fifth Avenue, and Kathleen Hall, general manager of Windows 7 marketing at Microsoft Corp., also participated.

For Broadcast Media

Links to b-roll footage from the event: streaming (.wmv) | broadcast-quality (.mpg)

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