Hitachi and Microsoft Collaborate on Windows CE Platform

Hitachi SH-3 a Key Processor for New Category of Handheld PCs (HPC)

NEW YORK, N.Y., September 16, 1996
Hitachi, Ltd., (NYSE: HIT) today announced RISC-microprocessor and system-development support for Microsoft Corporation's (Nasdaq: MSFT) new Windows CE* platform, a new open, scalable Windows platform for consumer electronics and non-PC devices. Hitachi worked with Microsoft to deliver technology for the new category of desktop companion Handheld PCs or HPCs, also announced today.

Hitachi is providing its 32-bit SuperH** RISC architecture-based SH-3 microprocessor as a key engine for the Windows CE platform for HPCs. The operating system has been ported to the SH-3, and as part of the collaboration, the development environment and Microsoft's Visual C++ language tool chain are available for use with the SH-3. Several major OEMs of Windows CE-based HPCs have selected the SH-3, including Casio Computer Co., Ltd., Hewlett-Packard Company and LG Electronics Inc.

Additional cooperation will focus on combining Microsoft's strength and experience in software development with Hitachi's expertise in advanced high-performance, low-power consumption microprocessor technology to develop handheld and consumer-appliance embedded platforms for low-cost computing, and communications devices with PC connectivity and compatibility.

In making the announcement on the relationship between the two companies, Dr. Tsugio Makimoto, executive managing director in charge of electronic components operations of Hitachi, Ltd., said, "This important collaboration will make available to the consumer, handheld and consumer appliance platforms that are designed for convenience and simplicity, including features such as long battery life, built-in communications and Windows compatibility. Microsoft is the preeminent developer of software technology. Hitachi, by virtue of its long experience in integrated circuit technologies, is uniquely equipped to apply its skills to the success of the venture. The SH is Hitachi's flagship semiconductor product and has achieved considerable customer and market acceptance. The SH provides superior performance, particularly for 'personal access' products, which inherently have low-power requirements and high code efficiency."

Commenting on the announcement, Craig Mundie, senior vice president of the consumer platforms division at Microsoft, said, "It has long been Microsoft's goal to be a leader in establishing architectural specifications and providing systems software for new consumer electronics platforms. We are pleased to announce that Hitachi, Ltd., is one of Microsoft's key microprocessor partners in this endeavor."

Hitachi's 32-bit SuperH RISC engine provides the most efficient solution for today's emerging applications and power sensitive systems which require high performance. The SH last year was the number one selling RISC microprocessor based on shipments of 14 million units. It is presently being shipped at a rate of more than 1 million units per month. The SH is currently designed into more than 900 diverse applications, including digital cameras, Global Positioning Systems for navigation, mobile telephones and entertainment electronics, among others. VLSI Technology, Inc., is a licensee of the SuperH architecture. In the future, Hitachi expects to unveil a higher performance 300 MIPS SH processor, which will be a further enhancement for Windows CE-based HPCs.

Hitachi, Ltd., headquartered in Tokyo, Japan, is the world’s leading global electronics company, with fiscal 1995 consolidated sales (ending March 31, 1996) of $76.6 billion***. The company manufactures and markets a wide range of products, including computers, semiconductors, consumer products and power and industrial equipment.

* Windows and Windows CE are trademarks of the Microsoft Corporation
** SuperH is a trademark of Hitachi, Ltd.
*** At an exchange rate of 106 yen to the dollar.