Search engine giant Google has shut down its Google.cn website and has started redirecting users to a server in Hongkong, offering users uncensored search results, much to the disappointment and anger of the Chinese government.
Microsoft, on the other hand, has decided to strengthen its position in the Chinese market in the absence of Google and released a statement.
In it, the software giant assured Chinese users that it will continue to offer its services in the country and will adhere to the laws of the nation, but will also advocate for freedom of information over the internet when the need for it arises.
The company made it clear that it no plans to follow Google out of China and added that “We believe engagement in global markets is important, as an open and healthy Internet involves not only access to information, but access to network connectivity.”
The move by Google has not come down well with the Chinese government, as it was 'shocked' by the antics of the company and has criticised it for violating written promises it had made when entering the Chinese market a few years back.
Google was also accused of expanding a commercial issue into a political one, with other governments criticising China over its censorship policies.
Microsoft will benefit from the move out of the country of Google. The void left may be filled either by Baidu, the country's largest search engine or by other competitors like Yahoo and Bing. It is surprising though that Google hasn't decided to pull out of other countries that behave like China.