MS Windows Held to China’s System Standards

Microsoft has ceased production of the Chinese version of its operating system (OS) Windows Millennium edition (Windows Me) in China, due to the recent application of the national standard GB18030, which says that all OSs released after March 17, 2000 must have the capacity to recognize and process some 27,484 Chinese characters.

The impact of the national standard, however, will be slight to the US software giant.

Those products which fail to meet these requirements should stop being produced from September 1, 2001.

The Chinese version of Windows Me, released in April 2000, falls into this category.

"We will observe the Chinese laws and regulations and this is the main reason for the termination of Windows Me,” said Jennifer Ma, a product manager with the software business.

She also assured customers that the product would not affect current systems and that Chinese characters in Windows Me would be enough for ordinary users.

Since the sales of Windows Me is one of the smallest among Microsoft's products, the business will not suffer a big economic loss.

The company has released its Windows 2000 and is expected to release Windows XP in China, in November. Both of these have met the national standard, so the sales of these two products will satisfy customer demand, according to Ma.

(China Daily 09/25/2001)

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