Phoenix SecureMark Gives Tablet PCs Pen-Based Signature Recognition

8/12/2003 - Phoenix Technologies Ltd. (Nasdaq: PTEC), the company driving the global core system software standard in hundreds of millions of PC systems and connected digital devices for nearly a quarter-century, announced Phoenix SecureMarkTM, a password protection product that uses handwritten input, for its Phoenix Core Managed Environment (cME) FirstBIOS Tablet PC ProTM. Phoenix SecureMark extends the family of products bringing enhanced functionality and providing greater differentiation to Phoenix cME FirstBIOS. Leading PC manufacturer, The Wistron Group, is the first to implement this product into their new line of Tablet PCs, allowing users more secure access and use of their devices.

Phoenix SecureMark brings an additional level of security to these Tablet PCs by prompting the user to enter their signature, or other handwritten password, during the start up process of the machine. Until the signature or password has been verified, it is impossible to gain access to the operating system, network information, applications and user data. This Phoenix pen-enabled product monitors pen pressure, time to write the password, and the curves of the letters to determine if the user is authorized for that Tablet. This innovation is especially important in vertical markets like health care and the government, where users maintain confidential data on their Tablet PCs. For instance, doctors can now enter patient notes on their Tablet and have an extra level of security so that the information can not be accessed should another user try to view the data.

Phoenix Technologies was the first vendor to provide pen-enabled BIOS for Tablet PCs and continues its momentum in this growth segment by bringing new customer-requested capabilities to market such as Phoenix SecureMark. According to IDC, the Tablet PC market has significant growth potential. IDC expects almost 600,000 Tablets to sell worldwide this year, about 5 percent of the overall laptop market, with nearly 20 percent growth in 2004.

The Wistron Corporation is one of the top three notebook design and contract manufacturers in Taiwan and is a world leader in Tablet PC development and innovation. "Phoenix SecureMark authentication technology is an excellent enhancement to our Tablet PCs that simplifies the user experience while greatly improving device security," said Brian Chong, AVP for Mobile Systems Product Management, Wistron Corporation. "This 3D authentication technology allows our Tablet PC customers to add a personal touch to security, and most importantly, no more forgotten passwords."

"We are excited that Wistron chose to be the first to integrate this pen-enabled BIOS security into their Tablet PCs," said Timothy D. Eades, Senior Vice President and General Manager, Corporate Marketing and Product Division for Phoenix. "We continue to innovate and drive new technologies into our next generation BIOS, driving market leadership solutions in conjunction with our key ODM partners as they continue to add value to the products they bring to market."

About Phoenix cME and Phoenix cME FirstBIOS
Phoenix Core Managed Environment (cME) FirstBIOS is the third generation of core system software that gives manufacturers improved performance and powerful security for their devices. It delivers the compatibility and functionality that allows them to customize their products to a wide range of designs while improving their time to market. cME FirstBIOS is the foundation for Phoenix cME, an open software platform that enables the management and integration of functionality into the heart of digital devices. Applications and technologies such as utilities, productivity, security, and content delivery tools, can all be accessed independently and in support of the operating system from the cME platform. Both the cME platform and FirstBIOS solutions are available for PCs, servers, embedded systems and information appliances.

About The Wistron Group
The Wistron Group comprise a total of 10,600 employees, 5 manufacturing sites and 8 customer service and R&D centers worldwide. Wistron Corp. works closely with other affiliated companies in the Group, such as Aopen Inc., Wistron NeWeb Corp., Wistron Nexus Inc., AnexTEK Global Inc., Wistron Softel Inc., Wistron Software Corp. and Play Coo Corp. For more information about The Wistron Group, visit our website at

About Phoenix
Founded in 1979, Phoenix Technologies (NASDAQ: PTEC) helped launch the digital revolution when it created the industry's leading machine-independent BIOS software, which ships in more than 100 million new systems each year. Phoenix continues to leverage that core-level experience to develop many other vital solutions at multiple points in the foundation of PCs and other digital devices. Today, Phoenix solutions activate, secure, connect, and recover the world's best-known systems. These solutions operate from a Core Managed Environment (cME), where they're built in and protected from viruses, user errors, hackers, and corruption. Phoenix is headquartered in San Jose, Calif. USA (Silicon Valley), with offices in global business and technology centers. For more information about Phoenix Technologies, visit our website at

Phoenix and Phoenix Technologies are registered trademarks of Phoenix Technologies.

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