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On the Way... Universal Plug and Play

Techstination feature for Tuesday, January 11, 2000

What something called Universal Plug and Play will mean to you. I'm Fred Fishkin with Bootcamp, a report on computers and technology. The work has been going on for more than a year. Many of the biggest names in technology and electronics, Microsoft, Intel, Sony, Thomson, Compaq, Hewlett Packard and Philips are among those working on what is called Universal Plug and Play. Microsoft's Greg Sullivan...says the plan is to allow just about all of your electronic devices to communicate with each other...

"One of the pretty straight forward examples is with the universal plug and play enabled cell phone you'll automatically be able to synchronize the phone numbers you store in your cell phone...if you're like me, I've got a cell phone that can store 99 numbers and I have a lot of those used up, but I also have an address book on my PC that has phone numbers in it. Those two don't talk to each other today. With universal plug and play technology, they'll automatically be able to synchronize."

And that's just the start...the devices would be able to connect to the net as well...

"For example, you could have an alarm clock that will automatically go out and check the traffic and determine that you may want to wake up fifteen minutes early this morning and it will give you the option to do that. So that's the kind of thing that folks will be able to do."

How soon? Hard to say, but the technology could be built into some devices this year.