News Release

Cisco, Intel and Microsoft Open Joint European Networked Multimedia Lab

Alliance Helps Customers, Developers, Integrators Benefit From Networked Multimedia Applications
Oct 27, 1997

Cisco Systems, Inc., Intel Corporation and Microsoft Corporation today announced theopening of the European Networked Multimedia Lab, a high-tech facility based in Cisco's UKoffices in Stockley Park, near London dedicated to helping customers evaluate, develop anddeploy networked multimedia business applications.

Corporate customers will be allowed access to the lab, its facilities and its support staff byappointment, free of charge. The lab, equipped by Cisco, Intel and Microsoft with the latestand greatest in high-tech, will enable customers from vertical industries such as finance,manufacturing, telecoms, pharmaceuticals and more to develop and test new multimedia softwarethat responds to real business requirements. One customer who will benefit from using the labis Halifax plc.

"The lab at Stockley Park will enable us to quickly and efficiently evaluate options to deliverbusiness requirements. We would normally have to expend a lot of resource to set-up a similarenvironment," said Debby Foggo, manager, communications infrastructure at Halifax plc.

The Networked Multimedia Lab is the latest venture from the Networked Multimedia Connection(NMC) announced by the three companies in March 1997. The NMC facilitates the widespreadadoption of networked multimedia applications by helping customers deploy mission-criticalnetworked multimedia applications today.

"To ensure multimedia applications are usuable and reliable, it's critical for the desktop andnetwork to be seamlessly integrated. This requires industry cooperation," noted PaulMountford, managing director, Cisco Systems Ltd. "We're pleased to work with industry leadersto make it easier for customers to adopt networked multimedia applications."

The NMC's vision - to help customers deploy networked multimedia applications -stems from thebelief that mixed media can provide people greater access to information. Networked multimediaextends computer communication beyond static text and graphics into a richer mix of video,sound and animation, more closely approximating the way people communicate everyday. Opportunities exist for businesses to increase effectiveness and save time and money in suchareas as distance learning and desktop conferencing and collaborative computing.

"Intel has been facilitating the adoption of networked multimedia applications through itsleading-edge technology, from its high-performance microprocessors such as the Pentium(R) IIprocessor to its EtherExpress(TM) range of high-bandwidth connectivity solutions, to its IntelBusiness Video Conferencing and Intel TeamStation(TM) products," said Dave King, director ofsales and marketing, Intel branded products (EMEA). "The enthusiastic response from both thesoftware developers and the customers involved tells us that the time is right to enable abroad range of vendors to build upon the rich multimedia capabilities of the Connected,High-Performance PC."

"We believe that Cisco, Intel and Microsoft together can help make multimedia, over intranetsand the Internet, into a business-critical technology," said Neil Holloway, deputy managingdirector, Microsoft Ltd. "As the centre-piece of our networked multimedia strategy, MicrosoftNetShow 2.0 complements the breadth of Microsoft software platforms such as Windows NT Server,Internet Information Server, Internet Explorer and NetMeeting. The unique strengths that eachcompany brings to this venture provide an ideal combination that will make audio, video andother media invaluable components of everyday computer communication."

Support Corporate Customers

To support deployment of networked multimedia applications, the NMC offers the following:
  • Customer Deployment Support - On-site technical consultations are available to programparticipants. NMC program managers and technical teams will help customers define theirnetworked multimedia needs, solve deployment issues and help deploy appropriate solutions.
  • Networked Multimedia Labs - Complete end-to-end networked multimedia facilities for evaluationand development of networked multimedia business applications. The first Networked MultimediaLab was opened at Cisco's headquarters in San Jose, California in April 1997. The EuropeanNetworked Multimedia Lab, opened today, is the second NMC lab. Customers are allowed access tothe lab, its facilities and its support staff by appointment, free of charge.
  • Support for Software Developers - Comprehensive management tools and deployment support forsoftware developers will be available in conjunction with the Labs. These NMC tools willinclude software development kits, sample code, utilities and hyperlinks and documentation.

Support for Industry Standards

The NMC believes the establishment and adoption of networked multimedia standards are key tothe success of its combined effort. Together, the three companies are working to establishrelated technologies as standards with the IETF, ITU and other international bodies.

Standards the three companies support include IP Multicast, a definition for sending one copyof information to many recipients over a network; the ITU H.323 standard, which defines how PCscan share audio and video data over computer networks; and the ReSource reserVation Protocol(RSVP), which provides a means for networks to support special quality of service applications. The NMC will work jointly within the standards process to develop and implement other openstandards to make new networked multimedia applications possible and to overcome barriers totheir deployment.

Delivering Leadership Technologies

The NMC collaboration recognises and amplifies each company's essential contribution to theoverall networked multimedia infrastructure. Those contributions include:
  • Networking Products - Cisco networking hardware and Cisco IOS software delivering networkservices that enable companies to deploy end-to-end multimedia applications.
  • Intel Architecture high-performance PCs based on Pentium(R) II processor, Intel Pentium(R) Proprocessor-based servers, Intel Business Video Conferencing solutions (H.320/H.323 compliant)and Intel EtherExpress(TM) Fast Ethernet adapters. Intel also plans to contribute to the labsequipment with Network PCs and its LANDesk(R) range of desktop management solutions.
  • Latest Software and Platforms - Microsoft's networked multimedia platforms, including NetShow2.0 multimedia broadcast software, NetMeeting conferencing and collaboration software andInternet Explorer, plus powerful operating systems, Windows NT Server, Windows 95 and InternetInformation Server.

Broad Industry Support

More than 20 companies have demonstrated support for the NMC. These leading ISPs and ISVsparticipated in the first networked multimedia design seminar, sponsored by the NMC, on March 5and 6. This first design seminar provided information on the objectives of the NetworkedMultimedia Connection and a host of resources to bring the networked multimedia communitytogether.

About Intel

Intel, the world's largest chipmaker, is also a leading manufacturer of personal computer,networking and communications products. Through innovative technologies, Intel is committed toimproving the Internet experience for PC consumers. Additional information is available

About Microsoft

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) is the worldwide leader in softwarefor personal computers. The company offers a wide range of products and services for businessand personal use, each designed with the mission of making it easier and more enjoyable forpeople to take advantage of the full power of personal computing every day.

Cisco Systems

Cisco Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ: CSCO) is theworldwide leader in networking for the Internet. at

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Cisco IOS is a trademark, and Cisco, Cisco Systems, and the Cisco Systems logo areregistered trademarks of Cisco Systems, Inc. in the U.S. and certain other countries. All othertrademarks mentioned in this document are the property of their respective owners.