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Microsoft Delivers Office 2000 as an Internet-Hosted Service with Microsoft Office Online

Microsoft and Leading Partners Make the World's Premier Desktop Productivity
Suite Available Over the Internet

Nov. 9, 1999 - Microsoft Corp. today announced Microsoft(r) Office Online, a
new offering of its flagship Office product that will enable the delivery of
Office 2000 over the Internet. Office Online will be delivered by
Microsoft's bCentral service for small business customers, and will provide
a choice for Office customers who prefer the benefits of centrally managed
software. As part of an Office Online pilot program, industry-leading
partners also announced Office Online service offerings today, including
Alliant, British Telecommunications PLC, CenterBeam Inc., Concentric Network
Corp., Digex, Inc., Equant, FutureLink Corp., Interland Inc., Interliant
Inc., Micron Electronics Inc., Qwest Communications International Inc.,
TeleComputing Inc., USinternetworking Inc., Verio Inc., and Winstar
Communications, Inc. Several of these offerings are available today and
others will be introduced over the upcoming months.

"We are moving into the next wave of the Web where software and services are
delivered together, and we are excited to offer Office 2000 to our customers
in this new way," said Jeremy Gittins, Group Marketing Manager Business
Productivity Division, Microsoft. "Providing productivity applications along
with services over the Internet is a new opportunity for our partners and
Office Online will offer new solutions for our customers. With Office
Online, we believe the world's leading desktop productivity suite will
contribute to the growth of this emerging market."

"BT is delighted to be working with Microsoft in this new and exciting
field. It combines the capabilities of both companies and is in response to
market demand," said Jerry Thompson, General manager of corporate business
at BT Internet and Multimedia. "BT and Microsoft are developing services
that will allow customers to benefit from world-class business software,
using a flexible, rented service that they can access via robust
communication links. This is the shape of things to come in the new world of
software distribution and usage."

Office Online users will enjoy the same benefits of the traditional desktop
version of Office and other upcoming new Web services. With over 100
million licenses sold to date, Office delivers industry-leading value to a
diverse set of customers using a variety of hardware devices ranging from
Windows CE-based Palm-size PC devices to enterprise servers. Office Online
builds upon this heritage by providing a centrally managed solution for
customers while leveraging existing training and infrastructure. This
solution may appeal to certain customers, such as users at branch offices
who lack onsite IT support, and small to medium-sized businesses that find
application outsourcing more cost-effective and want to access the latest
technology. While the vast majority of customers will continue to reap the
productivity benefits of Office by installing it locally on a standard PC,
over the next few years, Office Online will empower users with certain
computing needs with a new option for accessing Office applications and
services through a high-speed Internet connection.


New Offering Builds Upon Leading Technology

Office Online will deliver the complete Office 2000 suite to a range of
Windows and Windows CE clients using Windows NT or Windows 2000's Terminal
Services. This has the ability to deliver the complete Windows experience
and application functionality through terminal emulation. Since the release
of Office 97, corporations have deployed Office via the Windows Terminal
Server over corporate or private networks. With Office Online, customers can
now access their Windows desktop and Office applications by simply
connecting to a Windows Terminal Server running Office 2000 using an
Internet connection. Office 2000 has been specially tuned to perform better
and adjusts dynamically when being run in a hosted environment. Office
Online will offer the familiar, industry-leading Office applications
including Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel, Microsoft PowerPoint(r)
presentation graphics program, Microsoft Access, Microsoft Publisher,
Microsoft PhotoDraw, Microsoft FrontPage(r) Web site creation and management
tool and Microsoft Outlook(r) messaging and collaboration client.

Office Online offers users a complete set of services including the ability
to save Office settings and access their customised version of Office from a
range of devices. With Office Online, it's also possible to provide users
with other services, including document storage, web hosting, and Office
Server Extensions, which enable users to streamline workgroup collaboration
and save documents to the Web. Service providers will deliver highly
customised Office-based solutions as well as enable customers to get instant
updates and service releases, and provide customers with the opportunity to
pay for services on a monthly basis.

"As a private investment firm, we're working with TeleComputing because we
want to focus on our business, without having to invest in IT infrastructure
in each of our companies," said Steve Fragapane of Sterling Capital Limited
(include descriptor). "The new Office Online service means that our
employees can use the industry-standard desktop productivity suite they
already know and automatically receive the latest product updates. We're
excited that Microsoft is delivering yet another way for Sterling Capital to
use Office applications."

Broad Industry Support for Office Online

Office Online will be delivered by the Microsoft bCentral Web services, a
portal created specifically to meet the needs of small and growing
companies. bCentral provides a comprehensive and integrated suite of
services to help growing companies leverage the Internet to improve their
business. The site delivers services in three key areas: getting a business
started online by connecting to the Web and building a Web site; promoting
and marketing online to reach new customers; and managing a business more
effectively. The bCentral Office Online offering will be focused on small
businesses that want the full functionality of Office but would like to
outsource technology and utilise new service opportunities. bCentral's beta
offering will be available by the end of this year with broad availability
next year.

As part of the pilot program, Microsoft and its partners, including
industry-leading Internet service providers, application service providers,
telecommunications providers, and original equipment manufacturers, are
developing an expertise in the technology requirements and an understanding
of the customer needs for this new service model. Partners will primarily
target small to medium-sized businesses and build on existing services
including Internet access, web site hosting, data storage, networking
management, and customer hardware and support. Many of the Office Online
partners will also offer Microsoft Exchange, in addition to Microsoft
Office, as a foundation for their knowledge worker solution. Partners will
set their own pricing and availability timelines.

"Our customers want a complete communications and collaboration solution. We
will meet this need by offering Office Online, Office Server Extensions, and
Exchange in addition to our traditional service offerings," said Lee Wilks,
CEO, of Qwest. "We look forward to working closely with Microsoft to drive
the application services market forward and provide new solutions for
customers."

For more information on this announcement and links to partner press
releases, visit http://www.microsoft.com/office.




Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq "MSFT") is the worldwide leader in
software for personal and business computing. The company offers a wide
range of products and services designed to empower people through great
software-any time, any place and on any device.


Microsoft and Windows are either registered trademarks or trademarks of
Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries.

For customer product enquiries please advise readers to contact Microsoft
Connection on 0345 00 2000.

For further press information, please contact:

Jeremy Gittins

Microsoft Ltd

Tel: 0870 60 10 100

Simon Marks / Rebecca Rabin

AUGUST.ONE COMMUNICATIONS

Tel: 0208 434 5540 / 5551

simon.marks@augustone.com / rebecca.rabin@augustone.com

http://www.augustone.com


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