Microsoft Takes Geotagging Mainstream With New Digital Photo Products

REDMOND, Wash. — May 1, 2008Microsoft Corp. today introduced two new products to help photographers manage their digital photos in a new way using location data, a process known as geotagging. Geotagging is an exciting new way to organize your digital photos that was previously available only to those with technical expertise.

Microsoft Pro Photo Tools make geotagging available for all photographers and can be downloaded for free at the Microsoft Pro Photo Web site at http://www.microsoft.com/prophoto[1]. Today, Microsoft also released Expression Media 2, a new version of its digital asset management software, which is part of the Expression family of products for creative professionals. Expression Media 2 is designed to help reduce the amount of time required by photographers to manage and organize large collections of photos and other digital media, and it includes geotagging functionality.

Geotagging with Virtual Earth: Take advantage of geotagged images with Virtual Earth integration.

“These two products really simplify the process of geotagging and organizing digital photos by location, even without a GPS device,” said Josh Weisberg, director of the Rich Media Group at Microsoft. “We’ll continue to look for ways to simplify features like geotagging that help keep photographers organized.”

As digital photography has gained popularity, so has the demand for geotagging tools. Photographers, both professionals and enthusiasts, want the ability to quickly identify the location of their images. With the Pro Photo Tools, photographers have a lot of flexibility in how they tag their photos, including RAW formats. They can gather location information from a variety of sources and apply it to the metadata in their images, drag and drop images on a map, determine location names based on GPS coordinates, and assign GPS data to images that are missing it.

“Geotagging is a hot new area in digital photography, and like other popular digital photo features, I expect photographers will be asking themselves how they ever lived without it,” said Ron Glaz, analyst at IDC. “Until now geotagging has been hard to do, requiring special expertise and tools. The time has come for an application that even the weekend photographer can use. Microsoft’s initiative of leading the way and making geotagging accessible to pros and enthusiasts alike is a step in the right direction.”

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