We are seeing the steady raise of China’s AI infrastructure to boost its economic power and productivity further onto the next Cognitive Learning and manufacturing revolution. China hopes to use AI in industry and factories by means of AI aided production systems, drastically shortened R and D time from years to weeks or months needed for example in materials selection for production. World domination in AI by the next decades is ultimately the nations goal.
An AI development plan by China last 2017 “New Generation Artificial Intelligence Development Plan” reveals a comprehensive road map of this AI domination goal by 2030. To retain the highly specialized AI professionals and university graduates to lead the development of this innovative and powerful technology will be given priority and given very attractive salaries to keep them within the countries employment in the projected RMB 1 trillion ($150 billion) AI industry.
A researcher at the University of Oxford’s Future of Humanity Institute In a 2018 study Jeffrey Ding, said, “The hype over China as an AI superpower poised to overtake the U.S. is certainly overblown, The U.S. maintains structural advantages in the quality of scientific and technological inputs, the fundamental layers of the AI value chain, and key sub domains of AI (such as computer vision, predictive intelligence and natural language processing).” As per Ding if 100 points equals the total global AI capacity then U.S. has 33 points and China 17 points says the study. “There’s no doubt China sees AI as one of the critical technologies of this era and wants to match the United States,” says Ding.
China’s plan to have globally leading AI companies by 2020 is within reach, given the growing expertise of its three core tech companies namely, Tencent, Baidu and Alibaba, says Ding. “These companies have become global leaders in AI, although they are still not in the same tier as US companies, such as Google and Microsoft,”. Notwithstanding the global situation fact is there were 206 Chinese firms out of a global total of 494 ultra-valuable start-ups – known as “unicorns” – in June 2019, according to the research firm Hurun Report. China is home to the world’s three most valuable unicorns – Alibaba affiliate Ant Financial, app maker ByteDance and ride-hailing giant Didi Chuxing, which have a combined value of US$280 billion According to Hurun.
Table 1: Top Countries and cities where the world’s unicorns are based : Hurun Research Institute （https://www.hurun.net/EN/Article/Details?num=A38B8285034B）
There are at least ten privately owned Chinese AI start-ups valued at more than US$1 billion, including facial-recognition firm SenseTime, according to the research company CB Insights in New York. The nation also has world-leading companies in computer vision, speech recognition and natural language processing, including Unisound, iFLYTEK and Face++, says Zheng Nanning, director of the Institute of Artificial Intelligence and Robotics at Xi’an Jiaotong University. These companies will undoubtedly lead China into the era of global AI dominance.
Source: Will China Overtake the U.S. in Artificial Intelligence Research?: AI in China: Beyond the Hype