Microsoft Returns Pen To Business

    Next month Microsoft will roll out two new technologies that promise to change the way businesses look at the everyday PC.

    The Windows XP Tablet PC Edition and Windows XP Media Center Edition will launch at the beginning of November and demonstrate the new technologies Microsoft is rolling out for business people both in the office and at home.

    The Windows XP Tablet PC Edition marks a new direction for notebook PCs by adding pen-based technologies to existing notebook functions. Greg Sullivan, lead product manager in Windows, said this new PC takes the clipboard and brings it well into the 21st century.

    “The screen actually flips around and folds down on the base and acts as a tablet, which can be written on with a special pen,” said Sullivan.

    “For someone who has to get up and move around or is on a loading dock, for example, this is a great tool because they can write things down on this tablet and then can either have it read the writing or translate it to a program and it can all be stored, filed and saved on the PC itself.”

    He added that some come with a keyboard and some without and can be used simply for writing and communicating through a wireless connection.

    Microsoft and Sullivan are currently taking these tools on the road in a college tour, yesterday visiting Michigan State University and today making a stop at the University of Michigan.

    There the Windows XP Media Center will have a chance to show its capabilities as well.

    This software reportedly turns a PC into a media center that integrates digital experiences, including live television, personal video recorder footage, digital music, digital video, DVDs and pictures, with the freedom of remote control access.

    “This application and PC would be more for home use but could also be used in presentations,” said Sullivan. “It allows the user to look at pictures they have taken, watch movies, listen to music and even plug in a cable line and watch television. It really condenses down several large pieces of technology into one.”           

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