Microsoft: No. 9 on Sept. 4

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Microsoft Corp. has set Sept. 4 as the beta-launch date for its new 'Windows
Media Player 9,' which had been code-named 'Corona.'

The new media player promises to double the amount of video and audio streams
content providers can send out to Web users, as well as making accessing video a
better and quicker experience for consumers.

Microsoft said MSNBC has been testing Corona for the past several months.

The 'Windows Media 9 Series' is backwards-compatible with the existing
Windows Media Player. The new platform includes new video and audio codecs.

Microsoft said chairman Bill Gates will launch the Windows Media 9 Series at
the Hollywood and Highlands Complex Sept. 4, preceding a two-day developers'
conference (Sept. 5 and 6) at the same location.

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