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Microsoft Launches Smartphone

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Light Reading
10/22/2002
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REDMOND, Wash. and LONDON -- Microsoft Corp. today announced the availability of the Microsoft® Smartphone software to a crowd of more than 500 mobile operators, hardware and software vendors, customers, and members of the press gathered in London for the launch celebration. The Microsoft Windows® Powered Smartphone is a revolutionary mobile phone software platform that allows for more than just talking on the phone. Smartphone software keeps people in touch and entertained with unparalleled features in small, stylish mobile phones. Mobile operators worldwide can plan Smartphone offerings to subscribers, and further innovation on the Smartphone platform is likely to come from hardware vendors and software developers. “Microsoft has spent the last 27 years creating software that improves the way people live, work and communicate,” said Steve Ballmer, chief executive officer at Microsoft. “Now, we’re able to deliver a familiar and powerful software experience on a mobile phone to people around the world. Smartphone redefines what people can expect from their phone, offering them voice, e-mail, MSN® Messenger or Short Message Service (SMS). We’re very excited to bring the Smartphone to market.” The Windows Powered Smartphone takes mobile communications to the next level by offering the following key features:

  • More than just talk. Above everything else, Smartphone software is designed for a great phone experience. With handsets exhibiting a small, stylish form factor designed for one-handed operation, long battery life, hardware dial pad, and easy-to-use phone features such as caller ID, conference calling and more, Smartphone devices are everything mobile phones should be and more. In addition, Smartphone allows users to choose their preferred method of communication — voice, e-mail, MSN Messenger or SMS — as well as enabling them to access information and services at any time.
  • Easily accessible Outlook. Smartphone software redefines the mobile phone experience and extends usage beyond voice and text. The intuitive software enables seamless multitasking and provides a great companion to Outlook® on a mobile phone to manage contacts, calendar and tasks in a mobile environment.
  • Personalization options. Smartphone devices equipped with high-resolution color screen and the ability to play digital media and mobile games make them outstanding mobile devices for work or for play. Personalization options such as ring tones, color schemes and home screens, mobile access to the Internet, and new mobile services provide users with a unique and thoroughly entertaining mobile phone experience.
In a separate release: LONDON -- Microsoft Corp. and Orange SA today announced the launch of the world’s first Windows-Powered Smartphone – the Orange SPV – heralding the start of a new mobile revolution. Customers across Europe will now be able to experience the vision of a truly wirefree world accessing what they want, when they want it, wherever they are. The SPV – which stands for Sound Pictures Video – is a new class of mobile phone that combines high-resolution colour, speed and exciting applications such as full web access, easy-to-use wirefree email and instant messaging – all on a small, stylish mobile handset. It gives customers the freedom to personalise their phone and add their own applications. The SPV is the first in a range of phones that will act as a vehicle through which Orange will deliver its vision of the wirefree future. Orange worked with Microsoft and hardware manufacturer High Tech Corporation (HTC) to create the SPV. Orange assisted Microsoft in the testing and fine-tuning of the Smartphone software and worked with HTC to develop the initial hardware builds to deliver an exclusive Orange phone with a unique look and feel, and set of services. Every touch point the customer has with Orange has been considered - not only the navigation experience and services on the phone, but also the highly-trained customer services in all Orange retail, dealer outlets, and customer service centres. Richard Brennan, executive vice-president for OrangeWorld and Brand, said: “With the SPV, we now are able to deliver a suite of advanced services well before the advent of third generation networks, including photo messaging, advanced messaging services, video streaming and access to high-quality information and content, even across the web. The SPV is a key component of bringing these services to life and making them easier for our customers to access. The SPV will help drive Orange toward its predicted data revenue target of 25% of total revenues by 2005. “Working closely with Microsoft, Orange has overseen the project from the start to ensure that the SPV has specific, simple functionality that our business and consumer customers require. We believe that only by making the wirefree customer experience truly intuitive will customers use such services. That’s why we have focussed our efforts on a number of areas that are key to driving our data services, and made them easier for the customer to access and use.” Microsoft Corp. Orange SA
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