News Release

Cisco and Microsoft Join to Endorse DOCSIS-Based Solutions For Multiservice Cable Networks

Microsoft Corp's Web Site SAN JOSE, Calif., and REDMOND,
May 04, 1998

SAN JOSE, Calif., and REDMOND, Wash. -- May 4, 1998 -- Cisco Systems Inc. and Microsoft Corp. today announced joint endorsement for Data Over Cable Service Interface Specification (DOCSIS) for data, voice and video services. Cisco and Microsoft plan to collaborate on DOCSIS-complaint Multimedia Cable Network System (MCNS)-based solutions for residential, commercial and educational customers worldwide. The endorsement focuses the resources of two industry leaders on cable hybrid fiber-coax (HFC) infrastructures built to DOCSIS standards.

"DOCSIS and Internet standards provide an exciting foundation for innovation and competition," said Paul Bosco, general manager of the Cisco cable products and solutions group. "Our decision to jointly expand support for DOCSIS-standards based solutions means we will be aligning product solutions, accelerating broadband service availability, and easing solution integration challenges for customers. Our goal is to help the industry move further, faster and more broadly into the residential and commercial market with new cost-effective broadband services."

This endorsement of DOCSIS standards, combined with additional industry support, provides cable companies with a compelling opportunity in the race to build next-generation broadband infrastructures and services. Interoperable DOCSIS solutions are now being implemented by Cisco, Com21 Inc., General Instrument Corp., Microsoft, Samsung Electronics Corp., Sony, Terayon Communication Systems, Thomson Consumer Electronics and others. The standards are enabling further innovation by consumer electronics and networking vendors worldwide as they move quickly toward retail availability of modems and appliances. With next-generation network technology by Cisco and others, an array of modems and networked appliances can be interconnected and interoperate on a unified cable infrastructure.

"DOCSIS environments, combined with existing Internet standards-based platforms such as Microsoft. Commercial Internet System (MCIS), Microsoft Internet Explorer and Windows NT. Server, make it even easier for cable operators to deploy and manage new network services," said John Canning, cable industry manager at Microsoft.

"Cisco and Microsoft's support of MCNS enables Road Runner to aggressively continue to move ahead with the deployment of differentiated multiservice capabilities," said Mario Vecchi, chief technical officer of Time Warner's Road Runner Group. "We offer multimegabit access to the Internet and a wide range of our broadband content, including high-speed, PC-based multicast streaming audio and video services. "End customers enjoy more services all from a single cable access line, eliminating the need for separate telephone or ISDN lines for Internet connectivity. We look forward to enhancing even further the value-added capabilities to both our residential and business customers."

Extensions to current DOCSIS standards will enable cable HFC infrastructures to carry secure, high-quality voice and video services requiring quality of service as well as the ability to use voice on IP technologies on DOCSIS standards-based solutions for residential and commercial users. In addition, DOCSIS standards-based solutions incorporate encryption and authentication security techniques to help ensure complete privacy.

DOCSIS was approved in March 1998 as an international standard by the International Telecommunications Union (ITU), which will include annexes addressing particular requirements for international markets. The ITU standard defines modulation and protocols for high-speed bidirectional data transmissions over cable. The ITU's recommendation will enhance interactive cable television services, providing transmission data rates up to 30 Mb per second, and should result in worldwide economies of scale and interoperability benefits, the ITU said in its March news announcement.The Cisco and Microsoft DOCSIS collaboration includes the previously announced Directory Enabled Networks initiative, which will, among other objectives, enhance the directory services of cable data networks.

About Microsoft

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

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

Note to editors: If you are interested in viewing additional information on Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft Web page at on Microsoft's corporate information pages.

Cisco Systems

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

Cisco, Cisco Systems, and the Cisco Systems logo are registered trademarks of Cisco Systems, Inc. in the U.S. and certain other countries. All other trademarks mentioned in this document are the property of their respective owners.

Copyright ) 1998 Cisco Systems, Inc.Important Notices and Privacy Statement.