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Windows XP Ushers In New Era of Communications

Press release from the issuing company

REDMOND, Wash. -- June 4, 2001 - This week Microsoft Corp. will offer beta testers an exclusive first look at the new real-time communications experience in the Microsoft¨ Windows¨ XP operating system that will revolutionize the way people communicate and work together. Windows Messenger provides an intuitive, personal communication experience that enables people to see, talk, work and play effortlessly with friends, family and colleagues online and in real time. Today, the PC is a vital tool for text-based communications such as e-mail and instant messaging. Windows XP delivers the next level of communications through real-time audio- and video-conferencing, application sharing and online collaboration. Windows Messenger will bring the fun and productivity of full-feature communication to Windows XP users through easy-to-use, high-quality, real-time communication tools built on a standards-based extensible platform. "Windows XP offers an easy-to-use, real-time communication experience, enabling people to communicate and connect like never before," said Bill Gates, chairman and chief software architect for Microsoft. "With Windows Messenger, Windows XP will help make the world a more connected place by combining the power of the Internet with the innovation of the PC industry to make a real difference for users." New Choice for Users, New Opportunity for the Industry In addition to providing a compelling customer experience for real-time communications, Windows XP is a key part of an end-to-end, standards-based, flexible platform that will foster innovation and opportunity for developers and service providers. Windows Messenger supports the Session Initiation Protocol (SIP), a new Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) standard, which creates a variety of opportunities for other organizations to bring innovative, standards-based communications to the mainstream. "Conformance to IETF standards means that Windows Messenger will be able to participate in and promote the open communication that is at the heart of the Internet revolution," said Harald Alvestrand, chairman of IETF. "Given that the value of a communication product increases with the number of possible communication partners, Microsoft's commitment to standards conformance is critical for the adoption and growth of this exciting technology." Windows Messenger will utilize the Microsoft .NET Messenger Service via the Internet and work seamlessly with nearly 32 million MSN Messenger users. Windows Messenger also can utilize Microsoft .NET Enterprise Servers or be programmed to work with third-party SIP servers in corporate or enterprise environments. Communications Experiences for Home and Work Windows XP unifies a number of communication tools into one complete, personal experience for consumers. With Windows Messenger, users will have one seamless, integrated way to participate in text chat, voice and video communication, and data collaboration. The Windows Messenger technology will notify users when their contacts are online, making it possible for them to chat in real time through text, voice or video. In addition, Windows Messenger will enable people in different places to work together and share materials as if they were together. For example, students will be able to collaborate on homework assignments, simultaneously making edits and sharing information, and families will have the chance to hold impromptu online reunions no matter where they are in the world. Windows Messenger also is integrated with the new Remote Assistance feature in Windows XP so users can easily obtain online help if they have a problem or question. Windows XP also provides enterprise organizations with additional tools that enable secure communication and collaboration with others. Windows XP gives business users a secure, controlled environment in which to converse, share information and collaborate with co-workers while retaining the ability to communicate with partners and customers outside the corporate network. For example, a phone conference can become more productive when participants in different locations can make real-time changes to a PowerPoint¨ presentation. Unification of Communications Technologies in Windows Microsoft Windows has been a platform that connects people through communications technology since the introduction of Windows for Workgroups in 1993. The Windows platform has long been delivering new end-user communications capabilities and enabling third parties to build compelling solutions by supporting the latest communications technologies. Windows Messenger represents a unification of existing communications technologies in Windows, including text, voice, video and data collaboration, and will advance new forms of interaction such as multiplayer gaming and customer relationship management. Windows XP offers significant advancements to enable high-quality audio over the Internet so calls are not only easy, but also more enjoyable. Windows XP includes a new innovative technology called acoustic echo cancellation, which reduces the "feedback echo" problem frequently experienced by participants in audio calls placed over the Internet. In addition to PC-to-PC voice calls, a future upgrade of Windows Messenger will enable PC-to-phone calls, and users will have the ability to select their desired service provider to initiate calls from their PC to phones anywhere in the world. "Windows XP and its advanced technologies such as Windows Messenger provide the performance, communications and multimedia capabilities that Dell customers expect from their systems," said Tim Peters, vice president of Transactional Marketing at Dell Computer Corp. "These tools, combined with the advanced technologies of Dell notebook and desktop computers -- including Web cameras, speakers and microphones -- will enable the ultimate communications and multimedia experience to become mainstream."

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