With the upcoming Windows 8, Microsoft should see a huge increase in revenues from China. Consider that aging and no longer supported Windows XP has 86% of all Chinese computer users. But will Microsoft be able to claim this windfall? New computers in China that come from brand name providers are charged an unknown fee for the latest copy of Windows 7 that are sold with big name computers. But not so for knock-off PC machines that still dominate the Chinese PC market – they use pirated Windows XP copies. And CNN Asia raises the issue that Microsoft has not made reloading Windows a simple task [ for fear of piracy] like Apple has. This fear of piracy may be very real as a reverse Phishing process – legit Windows PC’s identifying signatures can be “ported” to illegitimate machines.
So a very good test of Chinese compliance with WTO anti-piracy provisions will be how well Windows 8 “sells” in China this year.