Microsoft: Bill Gates Speaking at CES 2007

Product launches and a major industry keynote by Microsoft's Bill Gates electrified attendees on the eve of the 2007 International CES. Produced by the Consumer Electronics Association, the 2007 International CES, the world's largest technology tradeshow runs through January 11, and celebrates the show's 40th anniversary. "The pre-CES events generated major excitement and anticipation for what's to come this week at the 2007 International CES", said Gary Shapiro, president and CEO of the Consumer Electronics Association, producer of the International CES. "With 2,700 exhibitors debuting the latest technologies and consumer electronics gadgets, the 2007 International CES is the only place to be this week for consumer technology professionals. CES attendees are experiencing, first-hand, a new convergence of consumer technology products emerging from the show floor, with new products incorporating the features, services and content that consumers crave."

On Saturday evening, the third annual CES Unveiled, the Official Press Event of the International CES, kicked off the pre-show media events at the Sands Expo and Convention Center/The Venetian - CES' newest venue for the 2007 show. Featuring 60 exhibitors, CES Unveiled showcased the latest innovations and products in GPS, digital imaging, audio, home theater, robotics and more.

The media buzz continued on Sunday morning, CES' Press Day, with 13 exhibitor press conferences taking place at the Sands/Venetian and LVCC. CES exhibitors including LG, Pioneer, Philips, Toshiba, Sharp and Panasonic, made major announcements and launched new products during their events.

Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates electrified the CES stage Sunday night with his tenth keynote appearance. After crowd applauds following Gates' announcement that he will return to deliver the 2008 International CES keynote, more than 4,000 attendees sat spellbound as he shared how the company is delivering on the promise of the "Connected Experience." Windows Vista, which Gates characterized as the most important release of Windows ever, will make it easier, safer and more fun to use the PC and will play a central role in the experience.

Through Windows Vista, Microsoft Office and Windows Live, consumers will connect to multiple devices and access live services, such as real-time weather and traffic reports. With Windows Media Center and Windows Vista, sports enthusiasts can enjoy real-time games, scores and alerts and digital photos can be edited, organized or burned to DVD all within the Windows Photo Gallery. Gates announced that more than 1.5 million devices are compatible with Windows Vista and previewed new PCs from multiple manufacturers and a Windows Home Server, all powered by Windows Vista.

Robbie Bach, Microsoft president of entertainment devices, introduced Microsoft advancements in music, mobile phones, gaming and television - or "Connected Entertainment." Hardware, software and services are coming together with the Zune, Microsoft phones and gaming. More than 200 million people play games on Windows, he reported, making Windows the number one platform for games. In the console space, Bach announced that 10.4 million consoles had sold in 37 countries through 2006. IPTV, which Microsoft first announced two years ago, is now supported by numerous telecommunications companies around the world and will connect with the Xbox 360 to allow seamless communication with friends while watching TV and other advanced features.

For his final announcement, Gates was joined on stage by Ford Motor Company's Mark Fields, to introduce the Microsoft-Ford "Sync" partnership, which promises to take the connected experience to the car. Microsoft auto software will connect devices into the vehicle allowing consumers to sync calls and other content with their car audio system. The fully upgradeable technology will be available in a dozen Ford car models this year.

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