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Microsoft Surface is an entirely new way of computing—one that blurs the line between the physical and digital worlds. It does not require devices such as mice and keyboards, and can be operated merely by touch. Microsoft Surface can be operated by the touch of fingers or hands of one or more individuals. Microsoft Surface also “sees” and understands objects placed on it—digital cameras, wireless phones, even “tagged” glasses—and can communicate with those objects and their users.We believe that Microsoft Surface’s unique interface and ease of use will lead to new ways to entertain, communicate, and create. By making an investment in Microsoft Surface today, users can unlock innovative ways to reach out to customers and clients.Microsoft Surface frees people from the boundaries of today’s technology and points the way to a new computing future.
So – what is Microsoft Surface?Microsoft Surface is a Vista-based computer that is easy to use because its operation comes completely naturally to people. There are no commands or keyboard instructions to memorize – users can begin to manage Microsoft Surface within seconds of sitting down to one.Yet Microsoft Surface is anything but “basic.” It is a rich and powerful computing experience, one that goes far beyond existing technologies such as whiteboards or digital project. Microsoft Surface will find applications in entertainment, retailing, design industries, and much more. It creates new ways to work together, communicate, and experience the digital world.In fact, we believe Microsoft Surface is so revolutionary it will prove to be a game-technology. With Microsoft Surface, businesses and developers will find new applications and uses much as the first PC led to innovative tools such as spreadsheets and word processors, and early CPUs created the now-huge videogame industry.
Microsoft Surface is a revolutionary advance in computing. But the hardware behind it is proven and off-the-shelf. A diffuser turns a Microsoft Surface tabletop into a multitouch screen that reflects the image from a DLP projector. Five cameras within Microsoft Surface see multiple inputs – for instance the fingers of both hands or several users’ finger motions. Microsoft Surface also can “read” object shapes, read barcodes, and detect wireless devices. The diffuser itself is tough and commercial-grade – Microsoft Surface can survive in a high-traffic area, or withstand a spilled margarita.Microsoft Surface “sees” the diffuser with a LED near-infrared light source that is aimed at the screen and operates on the 850-nanometer wavelength. Light reflected back from the diffuser from a built-in DLP projector is detected by multiple infrared cameras when the diffuser is touched.Core processing functions are carried with a CPU with a Core Duo 2 processor, 2GB of RAM, and a 256mb graphics card. Wireless communication is handled through Bluetooth and Wi-Fi antennas. RFID or Near Field Communications are possible in the future.
Microsoft Surface is fundamentally different from any other computing platform or touch-screen device.First, it can accommodate multiple users, all working simultaneously on Microsoft Surface. No mouse-sharing, no sequential exchanges of data. As many people as can fit around a Microsoft Surface can work on a Microsoft Surface – all at the same time. That makes collaboration easy and productive in a way that a kiosk or standalone PC cannot.Second, Microsoft Surface is “multi-touch.” No need to use a single finger or mouse pointer. People can draw, manipulate shapes and move data with one finger, five fingers, or 10. In fact, Microsoft Surface can recognize up to 52 different touch points.Third, Microsoft Surface is completely natural. People move data around Microsoft Surface the same way they move a saucer across a table – with their hands. And because they touch Microsoft Surface, the interaction is more natural, without the need for another electronic gadget to act as intermediary.Finally, Microsoft Surface does more than recognize touch – it can see and identify objects with specific labels (barcode or similar tag) as well as digital wireless devices such as wireless phones, digital cameras, PDAs and more. It also can manage multiple devices at a time, and handle tasks such as transferring photos from a camera to a wireless phone.
For your customers, Microsoft Surface can: Deliver a memorable experience that is educating and entertaining. Microsoft Surface is unlike any other type of computing experience. Its engaging, social user interface allows customers to create experiences that your competitors aren’t offering. Help customers intuitively discover your products and services by exploring and discovering similar products and associated services. For example, in the hospitality industry users can discover other properties and even take a virtual tour of related locations. Enable customers to interact with each other. Microsoft Surface encourages 360-degree interaction, information exchange, and collaboration among multiple users. Give ownership of the result by putting the end-user in the driver’s seat, and having them play a major role in discovering, learning, and making informed decisions about products and services.
For your business, Microsoft Surface can: Attract new customers by utilizing innovating and intuitive technology. With its technologically advanced, yet intuitive approach to computing, Surface will immediately appeal to users.Increase Customer Loyalty by enabling you to engage your customer in new and exciting ways, and to tailor the experience according to individual needs. Microsoft Surface can create an experience customers will remember, long after they have left your premises … and keep them coming back for more. Improve brand perception: You can inform your customers about allied services and related products— new discoveries are just a touch away. And with Microsoft Surface’s full-color, interactive user interface come new opportunities for displaying your brand and creating a customized user experience that sets your business apart from the competition. Help cross-sell and up-sell allied products by informing and leading your users toward additional products and services Reduce cost of service with self-service options. Microsoft Surface’s touch properties encourage user interaction, enabling users to discover content without external assistance. This will reduce the load on your sales staff and will help them utilize their time better in helping customers finally close the transaction.
Surface presents exciting opportunities for many types of businesses. Currently, Microsoft Surface is focusing efforts on five major verticals: Retail, Hospitality, Automotive, Financial Services, and Healthcare. But Microsoft Surface isn’t just limited to these industries. Microsoft Surface has the potential to change many other vertical markets.
Microsoft Surface has huge potential in the retail arena. Is easy to use, so you don’t need to dedicate staff to managing it. Customers can take advantage of self-service options that are fun and enjoyable, building customer loyalty. And Microsoft Surface appeals to younger consumers who perhaps haven’t yet developed firm retail habits. You can create a generation of loyal customers with Microsoft Surface.Customers can use Microsoft Surface to perform tasks such as designing a living room or kitchen, giving them ownership of the result. Or, clothiers can use Microsoft Surface to create a wardrobe around a necktie or accessory, creating new sales. Food stores can use Microsoft Surface with menu planning and wine suggestions, helping busy customers and driving sales.Microsoft Surface creates new ways to communicate with consumers. It recognizes devices such as wireless telephones, so customers can upload product information or add on features. That makes Microsoft Surface a virtual sales force.Microsoft Surface improves customer satisfaction by giving customers new and exciting ways to review products and engage a retailer.
The Microsoft Surface possibilities in Leisure and Entertainment are limitless. Microsoft Surface can offer new ways to entertain customers, take advantage of loyalty cards (place a card on Microsoft Surface, and the customers favorite drinks and meals are instantly displayed) and extend brand awareness. With Microsoft Surface, Leisure and Entertainment companies can design new activities for guests that can boost revenue. These include games, interactive tours of relevant properties, information about other travel and entertainment opportunities.
Cars today are sold much the way they have been sold for 50 years. But hardly anyone likes that experience—least of all Gen X and Millennial customers who expect a fast, customized, digital experience. Microsoft Surface gives dealers a way to create cachet around brands and re-shape the customer experience.20 years ago, auto salespeople knew far more than customers about the products they sold. But today customers are armed with data from the Internet, and probably know more than the salespeople. Microsoft Surface recognizes that change, and gives customers a tool they can use on the spot to perform product research.Customers and salespeople can use Microsoft Surface to build a “virtual” car—comparing colors and options quickly and easily. That helps customers envision themselves in the car.Customers also can review finance options.Dealers can use Microsoft Surface to upsell options and warranties.Lastly, automakers can employ Microsoft Surface as a collaborative tool to assist with product development, using CAD and related data, along with tools such as Live Meeting.With Microsoft Surface, customers have a 3D view of different cars in different colors. They can go for virtual drives, compare features, and send a picture to friends or family. Customers can also research a car through online reviews. And they can review different financing options.Microsoft Surface also offers dealers a chance to upsell options such as extended warranties or custom wheels. Lastly, Microsoft Surface can help entertain customers who are waiting for an oil change or other service. No more old magazines!
Put Microsoft Surface in a bank lobby and watch customers take advantage of it. Microsoft Surface can transform the customer experience, replacing complicated paper-based product descriptions with an easy to use interface that allows them to quickly create and compare different portfolio mixes or compare different bank products.With Microsoft Surface, banks can help personalize customer contact, using Microsoft Surface as a common meeting area, rather than reviewing documents on a computer screen while a customer is forced to sit across a desk. Banks also can use Microsoft Surface to allow SMEs to remotely assist customers, reducing costs while still providing excellent service.Microsoft Surface can recognize key cards or other devices, so that customers can receive financial information on a Microsoft Surface unit that is meant specifically for them. Microsoft Surface also can measure how many customers take action on particular offers, providing financial institutions with valuable insight into marketing and customer behavior.Microsoft Surface also can help with practical functions such as check scanning, streamlining operations.
Microsoft Surface offers a wealth of opportunities in health care.For patients, Microsoft Surface can improve the clinic experience by allowing self check-in, giving them an easy way to review and update medical records such as Health Vault, and allowing them to research and review treatment options. Microsoft Surface also can provide patients with entertainment and game options.For clinicians, Microsoft Surface can offer options such as a smart white board in the emergency room, so physicians can collaborate on treatment options. It can offer a patient care board for nursing stations, and provide an easy-to-use workstation for retrieving and reviewing high-def patient MRI scans or other images. It also could provide a medication room of the future, calling up medication interactions or comparisons with current patient medications.For hospitals, Microsoft Surface offers a way to gain a competitive edge by providing a superior patient experience. Medical and mobile device makers can employ Microsoft Surface in many ways by creating devices that Microsoft Surface can recognize, which can help synchronize records and support workflow and patient management. Devices such as glucose monitors and blood pressure monitors that are recognized and read by Microsoft Surface also could be created.Drug companies can use Microsoft Surface to introduce and educate physicians about new drugs without the need for paper documents. Also, patients could be solicited for trials, and educated about particular medications.
Microsoft Surface is ready to work for your business today. It has been on the market for a year, proving itself as a reliable and adaptable technology. Consumers love Microsoft Surface and have shown a strong desire to see Microsoft Surface in more locations. At the same time, the partner ecosystem for Microsoft Surface is growing fast, meaning businesses have more options when it comes to developing applications for Microsoft Surface. And this fall we announced the international rollout for Microsoft Surface, which will create even more opportunities.So it time to ask – is Microsoft Surface right for your business? We think the answer is yes.
Microsoft Surface also comes with applications that create a compelling experience right out of the box. Concierge allows partners to create maps and menus for users to navigate and highlight specific venues in the surrounding area. Users can browse locations by categories, view locations on a map and find directions. Music presents partners and customers with an opportunity to draw in users with a social experience around music. By adding albums and songs from CDs or digital downloads, your customers can provide an opportunity for browsing, listening and sharing music through Microsoft Surface. Photos provides a collaborative environment for users to experience visual highlights of the local area or activities and any other content from an image library. Users have the ability to scatter, re-size, move and rotate images and videos.
You can act now to get Microsoft Surface working for your business. Microsoft and its partners are ready to help every step.First, visit surface.com to learn more about this amazing new technology. You can read more about how Microsoft Surface works, watch demos, and see what launch customers are doing with Microsoft Surface.Then, calculate how many units your business can use. Because Microsoft Surface allows many users at once, you probably need fewer units than other types of computer screens. For example, one unit per retail outlet would handle most Microsoft Surface needs.Create applications using the Microsoft developer kit. Then, develop support so that your roll-out is smooth.Finally—plan your introduction of Microsoft Surface, and take it to your customers!