China opens antitrust probe into Microsoft

By Justin Mann on
Update: China’s State Intellectual Property Office has released a statement denying that Microsoft or any other large software company in the country is under investigation for possible violations of anti-monopoly laws. The bureau said talk of such investigations are “seriously untrue” and that it currently has no plans to conduct this work.

The US and the EU aren't the only ones worried about large companies abusing markets, it seems. China has opted to open up an anti-trust probe into Microsoft's behavior within their borders, with the Chinese government concerned that certain practices of Redmond are hurting the economy. They cite concerns over discriminatory pricing and software bundling practices, some of the same concerns that the EU had when they forced Microsoft to create special versions of Windows without Windows Media Player.

Microsoft has professed ignorance about the probe itself, but claims they will work with the Chinese Government if needed. An interesting stance, considering the fairly poor relationship Microsoft has had with China in the past. Vista was received poorly in the country, a popular Chinese search engine trounced its Live Search product and Microsoft cites China as one of the world’s haven for OS pirates. It'll be interesting to see what comes of this.

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