Microsoft officially revealed details of its Plus! add-on pack for Windows XP Wednesday, a new product that takes advantage of XP-specific features while adding a bevy of fun and exciting tools, games, desktop themes, and screensavers to the new OS. Plus! XP integrates with Media Player for Windows XP (MPXP), DirectX 8.1, and other technologies in XP to supply a set of add-ons that Microsoft hopes will garner some interest from consumers. This is the third Plus! add-on pack: Microsoft's first Plus! add-on pack shipped with Windows 95, and the company introduced a second Plus! for Windows 98 three years later.
"Microsoft Plus! for Windows XP makes the most of the power of the latest-generation PCs and Windows XP," says Jim Allchin, group vice president of the Platforms Group at Microsoft. "The exciting digital media features, the fun games and stunning visualizations make Plus! a natural companion for Windows XP."
Plus! for Windows XP includes Plus! Voice Command, which lets users control Windows Media Player with simple spoken commands; Plus! Speaker Enhancement, which improves the sound of common desktop speakers; Plus! CD label maker, which can be used to create customized CD covers and labels, automatically inserting the artist, track and album information; Eight photo-realistic 3D screen savers, including a super-realistic aquarium; three new games, including HyperBowl Plus! Edition, Labyrinth Plus! Edition and Russian Square Plus! Edition; and other features.
Microsoft Plus! for Windows XP will be available October 25 in retail stores, alongside Windows XP. It's suggested retail price is $39.95.