Reuters today reported that China could have a new homegrown operating system by October to take on US companies such as Microsoft, Google and Apple. Due to the mutual suspicions between China and the United States over hacking are among the main reasons for this action. Recently, revelations by Edward Snowden revealed that U.S. intelligence planted “backdoor” surveillance tools on U.S.-made hardware. This made China uncomfortable in using US based technology products.
This homegrown OS would first appear on desktop devices and later extend to smartphone and other mobile devices.
“We hope to launch a Chinese-made desktop operating system by October supporting app stores,” Ni told the trade paper. Some Chinese OS already existed, but there was a large gap between China’s technology and that of developed countries, he added. He said he hoped domestically built software would be able to replace desktop operating systems within one to two years and mobile operating systems within three to five years.
Microsoft offices in China were raided last month by Chinese government officials for unknown reasons. China’s State Administration for Industry & Commerce made the visits to Microsoft offices in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Chengdu. Later, a Chinese regulator confirmed that they are conducting an anti-monopoly investigation into Microsoft over its Windows OS. Generally, anti-monopoly investigations are done when some company dominates the market by practicing unethical business practices. Microsoft’s revenue from China is not so significant and they can afford losing the market. But Apple earns billions of dollars from device sales in China, if any ban was announced in the future, it would result in huge financial impact on them.