Business and Finance
Posted by Jeremy Goldkorn on Thursday, September 15, 2005 at 2:01 AM
Would you like a legal working equivalent to Microsoft Office for free?
For the next 90 days or so, you can download a Chinese-made alternative to Microsoft's Office suite, for free. The download is only 15MB, and includes equivalents to Word, PowerPoint and Excel. The company offering the free software is Kingsoft, whose more poetic Chinese name is Gold Mountain (金山). Kingsoft's Office suite is named WPS Office.
There seem to be two main problems with Kingsoft's office suite:
- The menus are only available in Chinese, and there is no English spell check;
Problems aside, this is the the beginning of a trend that is going to make people in Redmond and Mountain View nervous. Just as the West Coast is getting used to the competition from India, cut-rate Chinese software, hand-coded in Beijing and Hangzhou, is going to present another challenge.
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