China unveils a plan for bringing virtual reality to the mainstream
China plans to enter the VR market and sell 25 million VR headsets by 2026
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China has just unveiled its initial action plan for introducing virtual reality technologies. By 2026, it is anticipated that the Chinese industry will produce more than 25 million related gadgets, and the VR market will be worth more than $48.2 billion.
Five ministries, chaired by the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, jointly released the strategy. In China’s 14th Five-Year Plan, virtual reality technology has been identified as a vital sector for the digital economy.
Besides VR, the document also includes mixed reality and augmented reality technology. The strategy outlines specific goals and shows Beijing’s desire to dominate the VR technology sector. However, it is unclear if this refers to the annual release of 25 million headsets or the overall release of the same number of devices through 2026.
According to IDC researchers, China exported more than 500,000 virtual reality and augmented reality headsets in the first half of this year. The document also defines the objective to raise the industry’s overall worth to over 350 billion yuan ($48.20 billion); here, it refers to sales of both hardware and software solutions that fit the relevant profile. The plan also states that by 2026, China must create 100 major enterprises and 10 public information portals for the VR market.
The Chinese Academy of Information and Communications Technology, which has the support of the government, stated today that the US and South Korean governments’ recognition of virtual reality as a significant industry should be taken into consideration when analyzing the reasons behind China’s push in this direction.
The document also mentions well-known tech companies working on comparable VR technologies, including Meta, Microsoft, Apple, Google, and Tencent. Some Meta investors see Mark Zuckerberg’s metaverse project as a multibillion-dollar money pit, on which it would be wise to spend less given that the company’s share price has dropped by more than 70% since the start of the year.
The Chinese metaverse industry has seen a boom in recent years
Recent years have seen a surge in the Chinese metaverse industry, with a number of new businesses and startups entering the market. And now, a new report has revealed that the industry has raised a whopping $780 million in funding in the last year alone. By 2030, the market is anticipated to be worth $5.8 trillion. Of this, Tencent and NetEase are the two leading companies, with each raising over $500 million.
With such a huge amount of funding being pumped into the metaverse industry, it’s clear that there is a lot of interest in this burgeoning new sector. And with Chinese companies leading the way, it will be interesting to see how the metaverse develops in the coming years.
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