China’s State Intellectual Property Office has begun an anti-monopoly investigation into Microsoft and several other global software firms, the South China Morning Post reported. The probe comes ahead of the August 1 implementation of China’s Anti-Monopoly Law, which seeks to outlaw anti-competitive activity. The investigation reportedly focuses on the high price of computer operating systems and other software being sold on the mainland by multinational software suppliers. Besides Microsoft, no other technology firms were named. In February, the European Commission fined Microsoft US$1.4 billion, adding to earlier fines of US$1.2 billion, based on a March 2004 ruling that Microsoft had abused its dominant market position.