Phoenix Technologies Ltd. announced Phoenix FirstWare Assistant 2004, a software in the "Pre-OS" category. FirstWare Assistant 2004 gives users instant access to their Microsoft Outlook functions without having to wait to "boot" the PC, making it ideal when a user needs quick access to PIM details available on Microsoft Outlook.
With this software, users can access e-mail, calendar appointments, task lists and contacts within seconds of hitting the computer start key or a pre-programmed button that launches the application. The software kicks in before the operating system (OS) and other applications boot up. The process takes roughly 10 seconds.
There are situations when the "hybernate" or "stand by" functions available in some laptops will not work well, and fast recovery is not available. For these case, the software and the "Pre-OS" concept can virtually turn a laptop computer into a PDA (Personal Digital Assistants), except for the size.
The software is compatible with Microsoft Windows 2000 and Microsoft Windows XP, and requires Microsoft Oulook 2000, XP or 2003.
"We've all experienced the frustrations of waiting to get urgently needed information stored on our PCs, a problem which is often compounded by the hassles of doing business on the road," said Mark Ward, Director of Information Technology for Digital Lifestyles Group. "Because of Phoenix's expertise in the pre-OS environment, the FirstWare Assistant 2004 is the perfect solution -- it's fast, it's functional, it's secure, and it's extremely easy to add to a current system or build into a factory-shipped model."