Feeds

Red Flag Linux beats out Windows in Beijing

Could be the start of a landslip...

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

The essential guide to IT transformation

Research outfit Gartner has noted an ominous development for Microsoft and other non-indigenous firms operating in China. On 28th December 2001 the Beijing municipal government awarded contracts to six local software vendors, and rejected the seventh bidder - Microsoft. The contract covers office automation, antivirus and operating software, one of the winners being Linux OS vendor Red Flag.

The move is particularly important because it may signify a trend. Beijing is 'going legit' by buying software for machines that were bought without copyright software on board, and fixing this is something Chinese government agencies and businesses are going to have to do on a widespread basis in the wake of China's entry to the World Trade Organisation. Western IT companies lobbied hard in favour of China's entry, taking the view that it would give them access to a huge market. Microsoft itself already has a large presence in this huge market, but the difficulty is that the bulk of its presence is accounted for by pirated software.

China agreed to clean up its act on intellectual property as part of its WTO membership, but the Beijing move suggests that it will do so by opting for local companies. If this is the case western vendors will miss out on the market, and Windows use in China will be steadily eroded by Linux. Gartner suggests that Microsoft's failure to win a contract stems in part from poor negotiating, its troubled relationship with the Chinese government, and the government's support for indigenous vendors. It suggests Chinese firms "should take this opportunity to seek additional discounts and other incentives from Microsoft, for whom China is an important market." Indeed. ®

Related link:
Gartner report

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
BBC: We're going to slip CODING into kids' TV
Pureed-carrot-in-ice cream C++ surprise
China: You, Microsoft. Office-Windows 'compatibility'. You have 20 days to explain
Told to cough up more details as antitrust probe goes deeper
Linux turns 23 and Linus Torvalds celebrates as only he can
No, not with swearing, but by controlling the release cycle
Scratched PC-dispatch patch patched, hatched in batch rematch
Windows security update fixed after triggering blue screens (and screams) of death
This is how I set about making a fortune with my own startup
Would you leave your well-paid job to chase your dream?
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Advanced data protection for your virtualized environments
Find a natural fit for optimizing protection for the often resource-constrained data protection process found in virtual environments.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.