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WINDOWS 98 TO HIT MARKET NEXT YEAR

The name will be Windows 98, and that's when you'll be able to buy it, Microsoft Corp. executives said Wednesday.

At a briefing on upcoming products, Microsoft announced the long-anticipated name for the new version of its best-selling operating system.

The upgrade, formerly code-named "Memphis," will be available sometime in the first three months of next year.

The new version won't be the technological leap that marked the introduction of Windows 95 two years ago. But officials promised software that would blend Internet, radio, television and other media into personal computers, while being more reliable and far simpler to operate.

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