Microsoft Announces Strategic e-Book Alliance with Amazon.com
Aug. 28, 2000
Microsoft Reader to be the preferred format for Amazon.com's future e-Book store

SAN FRANCISCO, Aug. 28, 2000 — Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq "MSFT") today announced that leading online retailer Amazon.com (Nasdaq "AMZN") has selected Microsoft® Reader as the preferred format for Amazon.com's future e-Book store.

Under a strategic alliance announced today at Seybold San Francisco/Publishing 2000, Microsoft will create a customized Amazon.com version of Microsoft Reader, giving consumers the ability to purchase and download eBook titles directly from Amazon.com and read them in Microsoft Reader format.

"We are thrilled that Amazon.com, the number one online bookseller, has selected Microsoft Reader as the software that will evolve the reading experience for book lovers everywhere," said Dick Brass, vice president of technology development for Microsoft. "We believe the combination of Amazon.com's incredible shopping experience and the unique capabilities and great content available with Microsoft Reader will make electronic reading a powerful new reality."

"Books are at the heart of Amazon.com, so it is with special pleasure that we welcome the relationship with Microsoft," said Lyn Blake, general manager of Amazon Books. " This represents another milestone for Amazon.com, demonstrating once again our commitment to offering our customers the widest possible range of products. eBooks are an exciting new way to read that combines the transforming qualities of literature with the unique advantages of the digital realm."

Consumers can download Microsoft Reader at no charge at http://www.microsoft.com/reader/ (connect-time fees may apply). Microsoft Reader is the first product to include ClearType™ display technology, a Microsoft innovation that greatly improves font resolution on LCD screens for users of desktop or laptop PCs running the Microsoft Windows® operating system as well as dedicated reading devices. In addition to incorporating the latest ClearType technology, Microsoft Reader strictly adheres to the traditions and benefits of fine typography. It provides a clean, uncluttered display; ample margins; full justification; proper spacing, leading and kerning; and powerful tools for bookmarking, highlighting and annotation.

About Microsoft

Founded in 1975, Microsoft 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.

About Amazon.com

Amazon.com (Amazon.com, Inc., and its subsidiaries) is the Internet's No. 1 music, No. 1 DVD and video, and No. 1 book retailer. Amazon.com (NASDAQ: AMZN) opened its virtual doors on the World Wide Web in July 1995 and today offers Earth's Biggest Selection, along with online auctions and free electronic greeting cards. Amazon.com lists more than 18 million unique items in categories including books, CDs, toys, electronics, videos, DVDs, home improvement products, kitchen products, software, and video games. Through Amazon.com zShops, any business or individual can sell virtually anything to Amazon.com's more than 20 million customers, and with Amazon.com Payments, any seller can accept credit card transactions, avoiding the hassles of offline payments. The company also participates in sothebys.amazon.com, the leading auction site for guaranteed art, jewelry, and collectibles, at http://www.sothebys.amazon.com/ .

Amazon.com seeks to be the world's most customer-centric company, where customers can find and discover anything they may want to buy online. Amazon.com's All Product Search scours the Web to help customers find merchandise that is not available at Amazon.com, Amazon.com Auctions, or Amazon.com zShops, making Amazon.com the shopping destination to find anything. Amazon Anywhere is the leader in mobile e-commerce, providing access from anywhere in the world to Amazon.com on personal digital assistants (PDAs) and through hand-held wireless Internet devices that use HDML or the Wireless Application Protocol.

Amazon.com operates two international Web sites: http://www.amazon.co.uk/ and http://www.amazon.de/ . It also operates the Internet Movie Database ( http://www.imdb.com/ ), the Web's comprehensive and authoritative source of information on more than 220,000 movies and entertainment programs and 800,000 cast and crew members dating from the birth of film in 1892 to 2003.

Amazon.com has invested in leading Internet retailers that are improving the lives of customers by making shopping easier and more convenient: Greenlight.com, the only company that offers car buyers the control of auto purchasing online with ongoing service and support from local dealerships, at http://www.greenlight.com/ ; living.com, the leading online home products and services retailer, at http://www.living.com/ ; drugstore.com, an online retail and information source for health, beauty, wellness, personal care and pharmacy, at http://www.drugstore.com/ ; Pets.com, the online leader for pet products, expert information, and services, at http://www.pets.com/ ; HomeGrocer.com, the first fully integrated Internet grocery-shopping and home-delivery service-with operations in Seattle; Portland, Oregon; and Southern California-at http://www.homegrocer.com/ ; Gear.com, which offers brand-name sporting goods at prices from 20 to 90 percent off retail, at http://www.gear.com/ ; Ashford.com, the leading Internet retailer of luxury and premium products and the Web's No. 1 retailer of watches and jewelry, at http://www.ashford.com/ ; Audible, Inc., the leader in Internet-delivered spoken audio for PC-based listening or playback on AudibleReady portable digital audio devices, at http://www.audible.com/ ; eZiba.com, a leading online retailer of handcrafted products from around the world, at http://www.eziba.com/ ; and WineShopper.com, the San Francisco- and Napa-based Internet start-up that will ultimately offer consumers online access to the largest selection of wines available anywhere, at http://www.wineshopper.com/ .

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

The names of actual companies and products mentioned herein may be the trademarks of their respective owners.

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