US software giant Microsoft inaugurated a research centre in Taiwan on Thursday focused on cloud computing, a new technology attracting significant interest among the island's high-tech firms.
Cloud computing refers to applications or data storage hosted online by technology firms instead of being installed and maintained on users' machines.
The opening of the centre was a "milestone... in the era of cloud computing", said Steven Guggenheimer, a Microsoft vice president, at Computex Taipei, Asia's largest IT trade fair.
Microsoft Corp declined to say how much it would invest in the centre, or how many people would be employed there.
The company says it plans to spend 9.5 billion US dollars in research and development projects in 2010, a considerable portion of which will go to cloud-computing technologies.
More than 1,700 exhibitors are taking part in the five-day Computex Taipei, which opened Monday.
The trade show features 4,861 booths and is expected to greet around 120,000 visitors, including 35,000 international buyers, organisers say.