Microsoft maintains pressure on China after Windows 8 ban
Microsoft pre-installed Windows 8.1 personal computers and tablets are displayed at a launch event in Tokyo on Oct. 18, 2013 [AFP]

Microsoft said Tuesday it would maintain efforts to gain approval in China for its Windows 8 operating system after a ban announced by Beijing.

"We were surprised to learn about the reference to Windows 8 in this notice," the company said in a statement.

"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," it said.

"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."

The Chinese ban was announced following an indictment in the Untied States of five members of a shadowy Chinese military unit for allegedly hacking US companies for trade secrets, suggesting an escalating tech trade battle.

Beijing also summoned the U.S. ambassador and accused Washington of double standards.

China at the same time suspended cooperation with the U.S. on cybersecurity issues and banned the use of Microsoft's Windows 8 operating system on all new government computers.

[Image via Agence France-Presse]