ROME (AP) _ Microsoft Corp. and Italian mobile phone consortium Wind have signed a memorandum of understanding to develop new services, the companies said today.

While Microsoft chairman Bill Gates was in Rome for a meeting with Premier Romano Prodi, the two companies announced the main areas of activity would be the development of service centers, access networks, accounting and management control systems as well as integrated customer support centers.

The systems will be based on Internet and Intranet technology and will implement Microsoft office and back-office software on the Windows CE platform.

Wind, Italy's third mobile phone operator, is a consortium of Italy's domestic state-controlled energy producer ENEL, Deutsche Telekom and France Telecom.