Microsoft shorts from International CES 2002

Last night, Bill gates gave the keynote address at the 2002 Internetional CES show in Las Vegas.

This is a quick recap on some of the announcements, he made in his keynote and other information made available at International CES 2002.

  • Bill gates announced two new technologies, "Freestyle" and "Mira"
    • Freestyle is an important step toward creation of a complete media center on the PC. Build on the power of Windows XP and with a new easy-to-navigate user interface and a simple remote control, users will have a more relaxed way to enjoy their music, videos and photos with friends and family from their Windows XP PC.
    • Mira (based on Windows CE .Net) will enable a new generation of smart displays that give people the freedom to experience the power of Windows XP from anywhere in their home. Harnessing the remote desktop and wireless networking features of Windows XP and Windows CE .NET, "Mira"-enabled smart displays will deliver to consumers the freedom of the complete experiences in Windows, including browsing the Web, sending or receiving e-mail messages, listening to music, and editing and displaying digital images, from any room in the home.
  • Bill gates also announced availability of Windows CE .NET, delivering a robust, high-performance platform for developers building smart mobile devices, while allowing them to optimize their operating system footprint to as low as approximately 200K. As well as a training curriculum (which will help educate device developers and show them how to create devices using the new platform and tools) and a special 90-day Windows CE .NET promotional price of $995, two versions will be made available :-
    • Emulation Edition (lets developers test CE .NET designs on Windows 2000 or Windows XP platforms without the target hardware) [download from here, requires Passport Sign-in]
    • Evaluation Edition (will enable embedded developers to quickly start their evaluation of Windows CE .NET for their next embedded project)
  • In the two months since its launch, sales of Windows XP exceeded 17 million copies, making it the fastest-selling version of Windows ever.
  • Microsoft marked one of the most successful game console launches of all time, selling 1.5 million Xbox units through the end of 2001. Xbox has the highest game attach rate on record for a video game console launch, with 3.2 games sold with every system through Dec. 29, according to NPD Intelect. In addition, the "Halo (TM) " video game has made the NPD Intelect weekly top-10 list every week since its Nov. 15, 2001 launch.
  • Car stereo manufacturers are now getting on the WMA bandwagon, with AIWA and Blaupunkt announching availability of in-car units that can make use of WMA encoded media, making them capable of playing up to 22 hours of music, with models from Kenwood and Pioneer becoming available later in 2002.
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