Microsoft Announces Release of Windows CE 2.0

Expanded Development Tools, Major Enhancements to Embedded Operating System for Exciting New Range of Emerging Computing Appliances and Traditional Embedded Applications

REDMOND, Wash. - Sept. 29, 1997 - Building on the extensive functionality and broad adoption of the Microsoft® Windows® CE operating system version 1.0, Microsoft Corp. today announced the release of Windows CE 2.0. Windows CE was designed and built from the ground up as an embedded platform to empower the development of a new range of emerging computing appliances, including highly portable and personal computing devices such as Handheld PCs (H/PCs), game consoles, smart phones, TV set-top boxes, DVD players and home appliances, as well as traditional embedded applications such as process monitoring and control, instrumentation, data collection, computer peripherals, office equipment, point-of-sale devices and telecommunications.

"The market has embraced Windows CE with great enthusiasm," said Craig Mundie, senior vice president of the consumer platforms group at Microsoft. "In less than a year, there is now a large community of tool providers, systems integrators, ISVs and OEMs supporting the Windows CE platform. With the release of Windows CE 2.0, we expect the deployment of Windows CE-based devices and applications to accelerate even more."

The modular, scalable Windows CE platform allows hardware manufacturers to select from a rich set of services only the functionality required for their application, enabling the development of devices with a capable set of services in as little as 512K of ROM and 256K of RAM.

Real-Time Embedded Operating System Characteristics

The following are just a few of the enhancements in Windows CE 2.0 that build on and extend its real-time embedded operating system characteristics:

Rich Connectivity and Interoperability

Windows CE was designed to provide rich connectivity and interoperability support to power the new era of interconnected computing appliances. The following are just a few of the enhancements in Windows CE 2.0 that build on and extend its real-time connectivity and interoperability:

Rich Web-Browser and GUI Support

Windows CE offers rich support for graphical user interfaces (GUIs) of any embedded operating system. The following are just a few of the enhancements in Windows CE 2.0 that build on and extend its support for rich GUIs:

Windows-Based Services, Developers, Tools, Source Code

The most important business benefit of adopting Windows CE is that it empowers OEMs and ISVs to take advantage of the immense assets of the world's largest base of developers, high-productivity tools and reusable application source code:

Strong Support from Device Manufacturers

In addition to Handheld PCs on the market from eight leading OEMs (Casio Computer Co., Compaq Computer Corp., Hewlett-Packard Co., Hitachi Ltd., LG Electronics Inc., NEC Corp., Philips Electronics North America Corp. and Ericsson Mobile Communications), new categories of Windows CE-based devices are expected. Hardware manufacturers such as Aqua Communications, DriverTech, Intermec Technologies Corp., Radient Technologies, Symbol Technologies Inc. and Teklogix Inc. are standardizing on Microsoft's embedded platform.

"Windows CE 2.0 is a very promising solution for the automated data collection industry," said Fred Palmer, director of network products for Intermec Technologies, a leader in the data collection industry. "This new release provides standard connectivity and programming options that allow customers to integrate data collection applications into their existing information systems quickly, easily and inexpensively."

DriverTech developed its hardware using a competitor's embedded operating system platform until the company was introduced to Windows CE at COMDEX/Fall 1996. After evaluating the benefits of the new operating system, DriverTech decided to build its business on Windows CE.

"Last year, we switched and started using the Windows CE embedded operating system platform because it contained several components we hadn't developed yet, including TCP/IP support, a fully functional PCMCIA slot, and a full set of easy-to-use development tools for Windows CE," said Mark Haslam, president of DriverTech. "We got all of this for a minimal increase in our direct manufacturing costs, so we decided for the benefit of our customers to make the switch to Windows CE."

Symbol Technologies (NYSE "SBL"), a world leader in bar-code-driven data transaction systems, is committed to supporting the Microsoft Windows CE architecture in future versions of its terminals and systems.

"Windows CE 2.0 offers our customers a migration path that enables them to develop

applications using their preferred development tools from Microsoft," said Bob Saucedo, vice president of product marketing for Symbol Technologies' mobile and wireless systems division. "With more than 5 million scanners and handheld computers installed worldwide, we're looking forward to working with Microsoft on this very strategic program."

Windows CE Availability

The Windows CE operating system can be licensed directly from Microsoft for large-volume applications and through dedicated system distributors for smaller-volume applications. For more information about Windows CE, visit

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