China’s AI Vision
The Chinese government is still reluctant to lift its ICO ban, and the country is still cold on cryptos. However, China is quite enthusiastic about the blockchain-the technology that supports cryptos. China has laid out an ambitious blueprint aimed at placing the nation ahead of the US in the field of AI by 2030. The plan, proposed by the Chinese State council, has three phases. First, the nation will seek to be conversant with leading AI innovations and implementation by 2020. Five years later it will begin making groundbreaking innovations in the field. Finally, by 2030, displace the USA as the leading AI innovator.
The country looks to develop a $150 billion AI industry by 2030. Speaking during a the consumer Electronics show in Las Vegas, Qi Lu, the COO of the Chinese giant tech firm Baidu expressed his confidence in the government’s plan. He says, “The Chinese government understands what AI can do, and they show a lot of commitment for sustained and long-term investment, AI is part of China’s national five-year plan, and just a few months ago, the Chinese government published a comprehensive white paper to call out a systematic investment in AI.”
Readily available Data
To build a world class AI system, a key component is data. China is a good position to harness the much needed data considering its population of 1.38 billion citizens. Over 1.1 billion Chinese use smart phones on a daily basis while 750 million Chinese are internet savvy. This makes it easier for the government to gather the necessary data to build a premiere AI system.
It is feared that the Chinese government will use the AI system it desperately needs to spy on its citizens. Nonetheless, the technology will give China’s businesses a competitive advantage considering the information they will have on local consumers.
Innovations in progress
Giant tech corporations operating in mainland China have begun an ambitious research and innovation in the fields of AI and blockchain technologies following the government’s goodwill. Among the firms spearheading this new era of technological advancement is SenseTime. The tech company has accepted a $1 billion investment from Alibaba to develop facial and image recognition system. Other companies like JD.com are researching on AI and blockchains as well.
Chinese traditional banks have also gone big on blockchain adoption. WeBank for example has deployed blockchain solution to address issues of security, transparency and supervision. The bank is only 3 years old and already competes with legendary banks in the number of retail consumers it serves. A study by Startup Genome shows that China is already leading in the number of AI-related patents.