Microsoft and China share a long and controversial history and today a new chapter was added to it when China banned the use of Windows 8 from its government offices. While the entire world is moving away from Windows XP to the newer operating system, China has issued a ban citing use of energy-saving products.
The news came from Xinhua news agency which stated that this move is to address computer security concerns, which arose after Microsoft ended support for its 12-year old operating system, Windows XP. As shocking as this move may seem, it’s not surprising.
Apart from the tense relations the US giant and China share, a few weeks ago, China was working closely with local security firms to build a secure operating system. “China’s decision to ban Windows 8 from public procurement hampers Microsoft’s push of the OS to replace XP, which makes up 50 percent of China’s desktop market,” said data firm Canalys.
Around 50% of computers in China are still booting to Windows XP. By banning the use of Windows 8 in the government, Chinese government is making it hard for Microsoft to expand its user base in the country.
Neither Xinhua nor the China government explained how this move ensures data security, or power savings. We’ve contacted Microsoft and shall update the post as we receive more information.Further reading: China, Windows 8, Windows XP