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Online key for Microsoft as it charts its road map

Online key for Microsoft as it charts its road map

Microsoft Corp. today laid out the next phase in its strategy for online services, offering a
road map for new offerings that synthesize client, server and services software for people and businesses.

These offerings will combine elements of client-based programs with software that runs large servers and new services delivered over the Internet.

The offerings announced expand Microsoft's existing portfolio of software plus service solutions -- solutions that weave together the best of software and Internet services to provide a new generation of rich, seamless experiences that are personalized, integrated and available online

This approach gives individuals and organizations greater freedom of choice in how they interact with the people, information and activities they value most.

Microsoft plans to deliver a wide variety of new solutions during the coming months under two key families of service offerings: "Live" and "Online."

"Live" services from Microsoft are designed primarily for individuals, business end-users and virtual work groups. Live offerings span entertainment, communication and productivity. These services emphasize ease of use, simplicity of access and flexibility, and are ideally suited
for situations where people either don't have access to professional technical expertise or don't require high levels of system management.

"Online" services are for organizations with more advanced IT needs where power and flexibility are critical.

Online services from Microsoft give businesses the ability to control access to data, manage users, apply business and compliance policy, and meet high availability standards while providing performance, scalability, enhanced security, management features and service-level capabilities to support mission-critical applications and systems. Microsoft is providing business customers with the flexibility to choose between traditional on-premise implementations, services hosted by Microsoft partners and now Online services that reside in Microsoft's datacenters.

"This new era of connected computing is about empowering people and businesses to balance the power of the Internet with the rich interactivity and high performance of client and server software," said Jeff Raikes, president of the Microsoft Business Division. "With today's announcements, we are taking a significant step forward by combining our deep client and
server software experience with our strong commitment to delivering flexible services offerings for our wide variety of customers and their unique needs."

Today Microsoft also unveiled the following:

-- Microsoft(R) Office Live Workspace, a new Web-based feature of Microsoft Office that lets people access their documents online and share their work with others

-- Microsoft Exchange Labs, a new research and development program for testing next-generation messaging and unified communications capabilities in high-scale environments

-- Continued customer and partner support for Microsoft Dynamics(TM) Live CRM

-- The renaming of the Microsoft Office Live hosted small-business service, a service dedicated to addressing key small-business pain points, including core IT services and sales and marketing services, to Microsoft Office Live Small Business

-- Microsoft BizTalk(R) Services, a building block service that enables developers to rapidly and cost-effectively build composite applications, to help enable greater cost efficiencies and thereby open up new business opportunities for enterprises of all sizes

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