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Digita Platform Featured in New Pentax Digital Cameras

LAS VEGAS -- FlashPoint Technology, Inc., creator of Digita(tm), the industry's first standardized software platform for digital imaging appliances, today announced their partnership with Asahi Optical Co. Ltd.. Pentax will incorporate the Digita software platform into its next-generation products. FlashPoint's intelligent software platform -- which provides PC-like capabilities, including the ability to constantly add new imaging applications that run directly in the camera.

Pentax joins fellow industry leaders, Epson, HP, Kodak, Konica, and Minolta in licensing the Digita platform.

The cameras will be designed to be intuitive and engaging for enthusiasts, and powerful and scalable for mobile professionals and business users.

It allows users to easily capture and view images, add text annotations, store, catalog, and even run aftermarket software applications, all from within the camera. The combination of Digita's open architecture encourages third-party development of applications that will lead to breakthroughs in mainstream and enterprise acceptance and the invention of new imaging solutions and techniques.

"This upgradable, customizable approach will also lead to the development of exciting new applications. Users will enjoy a full-featured portable workspace with no dependencies on personal computers. Professionals will achieve increased productivity and enthusiasts will be inspired to new levels of creative expression," said Mr.Keisuke Haraguchi of general manager of R&D department of Asahi Optical Co. Ltd.

"The Pentax-FlashPoint partnership signals an ongoing shift in the entire digital imaging market. This will spawn new and compelling applications, drive new solutions, and will fuel the growth for digital photography," said Stephen Saylor, executive vice president and general manager of FlashPoint Technology.

Analysts estimate that intelligent, software-enabled cameras will ignite sales of digital cameras, exceeding original forecasts by roughly 40 percent.

Worldwide shipments will top 12 million units by 2001, and as many as 20 million units will ship in 2002.

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