As China prepares for commercial trial of high-speed mobile broadband 4G LTE networks, Beijing has pledged to boost the development of internet-of-things (IOT) and apply it in a broad spectrum of activities, ranging from agriculture to social welfare, as part of wider efforts to upgrade the economy.
The IOT push, which basically means striving for greater connectivity of various objects to the internet, is expected to create huge new business opportunities for peripheral-industry players such as mobile operators, chip makers for radio frequency identification, and telecom equipment makers.
The National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), China’s top policy planning agency, issued recently a detailed circular regarding the launch of demonstration work for selected IOT applications in manufacturing, agriculture, energy saving, logistics, transportation, public security, social welfare, city management and safe production. Authorities will select several projects which can demonstrate the cutting edge technology of IOT and gradually push the sector’s development.
Under the pilot scheme announced by NDRC, the selected pilot projects need to play a role to support the real economic growth, incubate new enterprises, push for energy saving and develop wide-range of IOT-related value-added services.
In September, the NDRC and other related departments had issued a special action plan for development of IOT, clearly stating that it is an integral part of the next-generation information technology industry which has great significance for the nation’s future. In a move to accelerate the IOT industry, ten measures were outlined.
Under the plan, there will be advance demonstrations of IOT applications in sectors such as manufacturing, agriculture, energy saving and environmental protection, commerce and logistics, transportation and energy, city management, and production safety by the year 2015. Efforts will be made to popularize IOT to turn it into an important force in promoting the economy.
The market value of China’s IOT industry as well as its primary applied technology, radio frequency identification (RFID), are poised for expansion over the coming years, experts said at an industry exhibition this month.
The domestic IOT market is expected to be worth some 750 billion yuan (US$122.39 billion) by 2015, Jin Dongbin, vice chief engineer at China Telecom, said in June this year.
The government will only act as a facilitator in the IOT development, while enterprises will play a leading role to drive the growth, according to the policy circular. Authorities will monitor the market and adjust the resources allocation accordingly to support start-up firms in IOT sector.
Beijing will also encourage the establishment of third-party service platforms in a bid to facilitate the commercialization of new applications. Each project under the pilot scheme should invest more than 50 million yuan, the document said.
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