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By | Kelly Fiveash 20th March 2008 12:28

HP and Microsoft plan Taiwanese R&D centre

Going where the partners are

Microsoft and Hewlett-Packard have announced plans to set up a new product research and development centre in Taiwan, reports say.

Tech boffins at the R&D hub will work on advanced software and hardware. They’ll also brainstorm ways of improving technical support for Taiwan partners such as contract laptop manufacturer Quanta, reports Reuters today.

A lot of computer hardware kit used by the likes of HP, Dell and others derives from Taiwan, where the semiconductor industry is big business.

According to IT analyst firm Gartner, Taiwanese company Advanced Semiconductor Engineering remained the leading provider of assembly and test services last year, with revenue topping $3bn. So it’s hardly surprising to see the two tech giants setting up home in that country.

Microsoft global technology centre director John Knutsen, speaking at a news conference, reckoned that the two US firms would help advance the technology of their Taiwanese biz partners by landing a new R&D plant in that part of the world.

Both HP and Microsoft expect the new centre to net a tasty investment return, generating $83m worth of sales within half a decade, although neither firm revealed today how much cash was being pumped into creating the Taiwanese hub.

Earlier this week Microsoft and Intel shelled out $10m each to the University of California, Berkeley and the University of Illinois to fund research around advanced software programming techniques for PCs and mobile devices.®

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