Microsoft Accused of Hiding Windows and Office Compatibility Issues

China says that its anti-trust investigation on Microsoft continues

Microsoft’s trouble in China continues, with local authorities now accusing the software giant of not providing all details regarding its key products in the country, including Windows and Office.

The country’s competition regulator revealed on Monday that Microsoft did not disclose all issues that it found with its operating system and productivity suite, which in their turn led to more concerns that would in the end affect other companies in China.

As reported by Reuters, the State Administration for Industry and Commerce (SAIC), who’s now working closely with Microsoft officials, offered the company a total of 20 days to provide a written explanation for its failure to provide details regarding these compatibility issues in Windows and Office.

Chinese investigators also looked at Internet Explorer and Windows Media Player, explaining that both are also raising some anti-trust concerns for the local market, but it’s not yet clear whether the company needs to address these two products as well.

Microsoft’s problems in China began in May, when the central government decided to ban Windows 8 on their computers amid claims that the company could use the operating system to access secret information and steal documents that could be then provided to US intelligence agencies.

While no details have been offered regarding these claims, China went even further and raided several Microsoft offices in the country, seizing computers, documents and internal conversations that could be used as evidence during the anti-trust probe.

Microsoft has remained tightlipped ever since, but the world’s biggest software maker has already expressed its intention to collaborate with state authorities to resolve all issues and make sure that no competition rules are violated.

“Microsoft has been working proactively with the Central Government Procurement Center and other government agencies through the evaluation process to ensure that our products and services meet all government procurement requirements. We have been and will continue to provide Windows 7 to government customers. At the same time we are working on the Windows 8 evaluation with relevant government agencies,” Microsoft told us in a statement soon after China confirmed the Windows 8 ban.

Word is that CEO Satya Nadella himself is planning a trip to China to discuss with local authorities the concerns that might be raised over Microsoft’s products, but the company is yet to issue a statement in this regard. Nadella however obviously needs to address this problem personally, as the whole case could lead to another record fine for the company.

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