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(Japanese Site)

  • Microsoft Expects Japan Version of Windows 98 to be Popular
  • June 22, 1998 (TOKYO) -- Makoto Naruke, president of Microsoft Co., Ltd. of Japan, projected that sales of the Japanese version of Windows 98 would reach at least 500,000 units mainly for private use in the first three months on the market.
    He made the comments in a press conference held June 17. The release of the Japanese version of Windows 98 was announced at the press conference.

    Naruke said that Windows 98 will have a great impact on the private -use PC market. He added that corporate utilization of Windows 98 will probably lag by three to six months, because enterprise users will need to test it.

    After a product demonstration at the press conference, the presidents of many Japanese PC makers gave speeches. Those who spoke were Hisashi Kaneko, president of NEC Corp.; Nobuyuki Idei, president of Sony Corp.; Tadashi Sekizawa, president of Fujitsu Ltd .; and Yoichi Morishita, president of Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd.

    Taizo Nishimuro, president of Toshiba Corp., appeared on a video screen. And Minoru Otsuka, chairman of the Japan Computer System Sales Association (JCSSA) and president of Otsuka Shokai Co., Ltd., attended the conference on behalf of the computer distribution industry.

    Top PC executives rarely meet for product announcements outside of their own companies. They have high expectations that the Windows 9 8 debut will help boost demand for PCs in Japan and throughout the world.

    "We expect Windows 98 to trigger demand in the private-use PC market ," said NEC's Kaneko.

    "The Windows 98 debut is a great help to makers of information -related appliances," said Sony's Idei.

    "This will expedite integration between PCs and AV (audio and visual ) systems, both of which are necessary to construct digital broadcasting systems," said Morishita of Matsushita Electric.

    In fact, many of the Windows 98 functions are designed to improve tasks in the home-use environment, according to Microsoft.

    Japan's PC shipments in 1997 fell below the previous year's level due to the sluggishness of the private-use PC market. PC companies hope that the arrival of Windows 98 will stimulate the market for individual-use PCs while the market for enterprise PCs is growing steadily.

    The announcement hinted that Microsoft has a strategy to promote Windows NT as an enterprise operating system.

    Related stories: Microsoft's Gates Introduces Windows 98 to Japan
    Windows 98 Sales Seen Fewer than Windows 95: Microsoft

    (Hi-Tech News Center)

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    Updated: Fri Jun 19 16:18:32 1998