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Ballmer moans about China intellectual property rights

CEO of Microsoft, Steve Ballmer has moaned about China’s lack of intellectual property protection again.

Speaking at Peking University in Beijing Wednesday, Ballmer said he thinks the country’s protection for property rights is “still weak” and that is making it difficult to sell legitimate software there.

“China is a market that adopts technology, and yet China is a market where intellectual property protection is still weak,” Ballmer said to a seminar of over 2,000 students. “In Microsoft’s case we are fortunate we can sell our products outside of China. For a Chinese developer, it’s probably tougher because your domestic market is a tough one in which to really sell software.”

The groaning comes over a year after Ballmer made a bid to claw back some revenue from China by telling its president Hu Jintao that 90 per cent of his citizens don’t pay for the Microsoft software they use.

However, Ballmer also said in his speech that he is “super excited” about China’s unique market growth, in that it’s the largest and fastest growing for both phones and personal computers.

Ballmer’s concerns arise as Microsoft prepares for the launch of its highly anticipated Windows 8 operating system (OS). Planned to run on touchscreen devices such as tablet computers, Windows 8 is expected to challenge Apple, which presently dominates that market.

Regular updates in the Building Windows 8 blog suggest that the Washington-based software company is working hard to ensure there will be plenty of features in its next OS to catch the attention of people marvelling at Apple’s shiny toys.

This week Microsoft announced that Windows 8 has a redesigned boot menu offering faster start-up times, easier multiple monitor support setup and a refreshed user interface that will ditch the “dated and cheesy” Aero design.

The Windows 8 Release Preview is expected to come out by the first week of June, Microsoft president Steven Sinofsky said during a Windows 8 Developer Days conference in Japan last month.

via The Inquirer




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